Two men who paid escort with counterfeit money sentenced

|News, Fraud and economic crime

Two men who called an escort to their Heathrow hotel room and paid her with fake £50 Bank of Ireland notes for services have been sentenced.

Charlie McDonagh, 21, and Wesley Maughan, 18, were sentenced for one count of possessing counterfeit currency today [Wednesday, 7 November] at Isleworth Crown Court. They received 14 months' imprisonment suspended for two years and were told to carry out 180 hours of unpaid work. The pair had pleaded guilty to the count at an earlier hearing.

The escort called the police after becoming suspicious of the four £50 notes she received from the defendants after providing services at the Mercure Hotel in Hayes on Friday, 5 January this year. Maughan and McDonagh were arrested in the early hours of the following day in the standard twin room they had booked for the night.

Police found £5,900 worth of counterfeit money inside the hotel room. This sum was made up of 118 counterfeit £50 Bank of Ireland notes - each with the same serial number. The judge ordered the counterfeit money to be destroyed today.

Nim Hennessy, from the CPS, said: "Charlie McDonagh and Wesley Maughan were found with thousands of pounds worth of counterfeit money at the Heathrow hotel room they were staying in.

"The pair initially claimed the money was already in the hotel room before they arrived and that they had simply found and used it. They later changed their story and admitted to possessing the fake currency, even paying the escort for massages with it.

"Using counterfeit money is a form of fraud and forgery and the CPS will prosecute those who break the law."

Notes to editors

  • Charlie McDonagh (DOB: 2/7/1997) is from Northern Ireland and is currently residing in Basildon, Essex
  • Wesley Maughan (DOB: 1/2/2000) is from Ireland
  • Nim Hennessy is a Senior Crown Prosecutor within CPS London North.

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