CALLS have been made for a disgraced Royal Navy officer to be stripped of his MBE after being jailed for fraud.
Iain Shepherd stole almost £59,000 of his stepson’s inheritance in a ‘calculated’ fraud between December 2006 and February 2010.
The former naval officer, of Bognor Regis, had been awarded an MBE in 2015 for his services to the marine sector and to the economy of Chichester.
But now his stepson, Joshua Powell, has demanded the ‘devious sociopath’ be stripped of the honour.
In a victim impact statement read during Shepherd’s sentencing at Portsmouth Crown Court, the 23-year-old said: ‘I would like him to be punished and to go to prison and have his MBE taken away from him and for people to know the despicable apology of a human being he is.’
Speaking to The News after Shepherd was jailed, Mr Powell said his life had been ruined by his stepfather.
The University of Portsmouth paleontology graduate had hoped to use the cash from his late father to pay off his student debt, fund his ADHD medication and complete the building work at his mother, Mary Shepherd’s home.
He added: ‘He was a horrible, devious man. I’m glad he is going to prison. It’s taken long enough.’
His mother echoed her son’s call and said: ‘He is a disgrace to the armed forces, a disgrace to the navy and should be stripped of his MBE immediately.
‘He lied to everyone. He pretended he was this wonderful businessman when really he was a two-faced, compulsive liar.
‘He is like a swan: on top of it, it’s all white and wonderful but underneath it’s all sewage and disgusting. He is just despicable.’
Under cabinet office rules, those convicted and jailed of a crime can be stripped of state honours.
Predatory paedophile Rolf Harris lost his CBE after being jailed for a string of sex attacks on girls as young as seven.
While former WBA world featherweight champion, Naseem Hamed – known as Prince – had his MBE taken away from him after being jailed 15 months in 2006 for dangerous driving.
Mrs Shepherd, of Chichester, has now called for a tightening of the rules to prevent fraudsters taking advantage of the inheritance system.
The occupational therapist added she was racked with guilt about introducing him to the family and that she has needed ‘counselling’.
‘He’s shattered the family. It’s been awful. We’ve had to put our lives on hold to get justice done and to finally see him jailed,’ she said.