Best man cons groom and 16 friends out of over €9,000 for stag do; gets jailed for 20 months
What a rotten thing to do.
Anyone who’s ever been on a stag party, particularly one that involves travelling abroad, will know that it burns a big hole in your pocket even before you buy the first pint.
The task with organising the stag usually falls to the best man, who is often in charge of collecting money to go towards travel, accommodation, activities etc.
That responsibility fell to Martyn Galvin from Yarm in North Yorkshire, who collected £8,000 (approximately €9,275) from the groom and 16 friends for a trip to Prague in August last year.
According to the Guardian, however, when the party turned up at the airport, there was no record of flights or of any accommodation reserved in Prague.
Galvin tried to blame the travel agent for getting the dates wrong, but it soon emerged that he had swindled the groom and his friends out of their money and the case ended up in court.
Worse still, Galvin also claimed to have terminal bowel cancer, a claim that subsequently turned out to be a lie.
On Thursday at Teeside Crown Court, Galvin was sentenced to 20 months in prison and ordered to pay back the stolen money.
The groom, who subsequently found a new best man and has since been married, said in court: “When Martyn told me he had suspected cancer I was absolutely devastated for him and his family.
“I offered to take over the organising but he insisted, stating a groom should never have to organise his own stag do. How could I not feel guilty? I felt I had put too much on him.”
He hasn’t spoken to Galvin since and said he never wants to see him again.
Judge Simon Bourne-Arton QC, meanwhile said that Galvin’s scam was “perhaps one of the nastiest and meanest I’ve encountered in my time involved in criminal law”.
“The fraud involved a string of quite dreadful lies, lies to your best friend, a man who entrusted in you the task and the honour of being his best man,” he said.