Former Fermanagh playgroup director admits fraud

THE former director of a Fermanagh playgroup has admitted charges of fraud and abusing his position and in relation to theft of almost £12,790.

Martin Cox (41) from Hillcrest, Enniskillen was accused of seven offences comprising five counts each of fraud by false representation and single counts of theft and fraud by abuse of position.

He appeared in the dock of Dungannon Crown Court sitting in Newry where a prosecution barrister advised the charges had been amended and consolidated.


These became one count of dishonesty transferring a total of £12,790 from the accounts of Tiny Tots Cross Community Playgroup and abusing his position of trust by using £7838 of the company funds for his own use.

Offending occurred on various dates between October 2018 and December 2022.

Cox pleaded guilty to both matters and the prosecution confirmed this satisfied the extent of the case and the remaining charges could be left on the court books.

A defence barrister stressed the funds have since been reimbursed in full.

Judge Fiona Bagnall decided pre-sentence reports were required and remanded Cox on continuing bail to return to court 3 July.

Although no details surrounding the full circumstances of the case were disclosed during the short hearing, it was previously contended Cox dishonestly made a number of cash transfers ranging from £750 to £5000 to cause loss to Tiny Tots Cross Community Playgroup and gain for himself.

It is further alleged he made a number of articles namely an email address, an invoice and a false email conversation each of which had been designed or adapted for use in the course of fraud.


According to records the playgroup was first incorporated as a company in May 2006 and lists activity as “pre-school education”.

Cox became a director in 2018 and resigned in 2022.

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