Police investigate as thieves target Sam’s charity cash

FAMILY Sam John, second left, with his mum Vicky, brother Matthew and dad Steve. Picture: Sarah Standing (131002-8369)
FAMILY Sam John, second left, with his mum Vicky, brother Matthew and dad Steve. Picture: Sarah Standing (131002-8369)
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FRAUDSTERS have taken money out of an account set up to get Sam John to America for life-saving therapy.

More than £500 has been withdrawn from the Mission for Sam account over two transactions.

The John family said they could not believe they have been targeted in this way.

Dad Steve, 44, of Albert Road, Fareham, said: ‘You have to jump through certain hoops to set up a charity account.

‘Once people heard Sam’s story, they wanted to donate money straight away, and so we set up an ordinary account in the meantime.

‘Because the account details are out there, someone, or some people, have set up direct debits for the account.

‘We couldn’t believe they have done this.’

A statement for the account shows on June 11, £109.83 was paid out to Tesco Bank.

Then the next day, £397.44 was taken out for AA European Cover.

Neither of the transactions were authorised by the John family.

A third debit for Sainsbury’s had been set up, but no money has been taken out of the account.

‘At first I thought it was a mistake, but when we transferred the money to the charity account, I saw it had been taken out,’ added Steve.

‘I couldn’t believe that we would get targeted like that.’

The John family is currently in America.

As previously reported, Sam, 16, was diagnosed with an inoperable brain tumour when he was nine years old.

In March this year, tests revealed the tumour had started growing again.

To stop it from growing further, Sam needs proton beam therapy, which is not available in the UK.

The treatment costs at least £100,000, and the Johns were not sure if the NHS would pay.

Through donations and various fundraisers, the family have raised £120,000, and the NHS said it will pay towards the treatment too.

This week the family have been meeting health specialists to prepare for Sam to have the therapy, which is likely to go on for six weeks.

Hampshire Constabulary has received the complaint and referred it to Action Fraud, the UK’s national fraud crime reporting centre.

Action Fraud has now passed the case on to the National Fraud Intelligence Bureau of the City of London Police which will investigate.