Dr Matthew Morgan leaving court
A crooked vet who invented fictional cats for a £230,000 pet insurance scam has been jailed.
Greedy Matthew Morgan, 38, was already earning £100,000 a year but needed more money to support his lavish lifestyle.
He took out policies for 14 made-up moggies and made dozens of claims over three years for injuries and illnesses he said they had suffered.
Morgan used the cash to jet off on overseas holidays and make regular trips to his native Australia.
He bought three luxury cars and spent £25,000 on his wedding.
The vet admitted four counts of fraud and was jailed for two years at the Old Bailey.
Judge Wendy Joseph QC told him: "The picture that emerges of you... is of a man who was not prepared to curtail his expenditure and lifestyle in accordance with his needs."
Morgan, who now claims to be penniless, faces having to pay back the stolen cash and is certain to be struck off as a vet.
He began his fraud while working at North Kent Referrals, Bluebell Hill, Chatham, in September 2009.
He made a claim on a policy relating to his own cat, saying she had suffered injuries in a car accident.
"The picture that emerges of you...is of a man who was not prepared to curtail his expenditure and lifestyle..." - Judge Wendy Joseph
Once he realised how easy the process was, he started inventing animals, using headed notepaper and an official work stamp.
Morgan was questioned by police in January this year - when he had already made 52 claims, but admitted just two.
By May, when he was charged, he had put in 54 claims, totalling £226,360 and been paid £198,000.
Morgan said he had got into financial difficulties after an unsuccessful attempt to buy his own practice and his divorce, just six months after the wedding.
Morgan, of Goodworth Road, Redhill, Surrey, has previous convictions in Australia for credit card fraud.