A WOKINGHAM man has been told to pay back the £22,000 he stole from a local church -- but was let off prison by a Judge.

Nicolas Bornham-Hill, of Harrow Way, Sindlesham, defrauded Wokingham Methodist Church of £22,153.61 between August 2013 and December 2017.

He was due to be sentenced in May but the hearing was postponed to give him more time to confirm he could pay back the cash, which he stole using two different methods.

READ MORE: Church thief given more time to prove he can pay back money he stole

In 2014, the 50-year-old forged the signature of a trustee in order to deposit a cheque worth £9,200 from the church’s bank account into his own.

Bracknell News:

And on multiple occasions between 2013 and 2017, Bornman-Hill stole collection money totalling £12,953.61 which had been donated to the church.

The Sindlesham man was able to access this cash because he worked as the church’s treasurer during this time.

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At the last hearing, Bornman-Hill’s defence lawyer said the defendant had been having “sleepless nights” over the prospect of jail time.

This considered, Judge Norton gave the 50-year-old another 30 days to prove he could pay back the £22,000 before he was sentenced.

At Reading Crown Court on Monday, June 7, Judge Nott sentenced Bornman-Hill to 14 months imprisonment suspended for 12 months for two counts of fraud by abuse of position.

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As well as this, he was ordered to pay back the full £22,153.61 he stole and take part in 15 days of rehabilitation exercises.

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