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Woman who met alleged conman on Zoosk paid £300 for flying lesson that never happened

PUBLISHED: 20:00 22 February 2017

Elvis Fair leaving Ipswich Crown Court. Picture: Archant

Elvis Fair leaving Ipswich Crown Court. Picture: Archant

A woman paid an alleged conman from Suffolk who claimed to be a helicopter pilot £300 for a flying lesson for her daughter that never took place, it has been claimed.

A woman paid an alleged conman who claimed to be a helicopter pilot £300 for a flying lesson for her daughter that never took place, it has been claimed.

Jane Croucher told a jury at Ipswich Crown Court that she met Elvis Fair, from Suffolk, on the Zoosk dating website in December 2014 and after exchanging texts and telephone calls they had had met up in March the following year after he had cancelled a number of meetings.

Giving evidence by a video link, Miss Croucher said that during conversations with Fair he told her he was a company director and lived in Kensington and was divorced with three children.

She alleged he also told her he had been a helicopter pilot in the RAF and had been the youngest person to achieve a certain position in the RAF.

He also said he had a company called EF Air which offered helicopter flying experiences as a sideline to its day to day business activities.

Miss Croucher said she was interested in treating her daughter to a flying lesson and claimed Fair told her that if she wanted to go ahead, he would be the pilot and as he had a five-seater helicopter she could go along as well.

Miss Croucher told the court she initially gave Fair £250 for the flying lesson and had later given him a further £50 which he told her was for VAT.

She said he had subsequently come up with a number of excuses for delaying the flying lesson.

“I had a growing suspicion that he wasn’t who he said he was,” said Miss Croucher.

She said that eventually she had asked for her money back, but “hadn’t received a penny.”

Fair, 52, of Thurman’s Lane, Trimley St Mary, has denied five charges of fraud by false representation between 2011 and 2015.

It has been claimed he met the alleged victims of the frauds on dating websites and kept money they gave him for a holiday in Hawaii, a helicopter lesson, repairs to a car and changing the deeds on a Spanish property.

The trial continues tomorrow.

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