Lonely-hearts conwoman who stole thousands from men is jailed

A SERIAL bride who left a string of broken hearts and plundered bank accounts of men she met through lonely hearts ads was yesterday jailed for two years.

Emma Golightly, 22, met her victims, seduced them and then stole their cash, spending the money on exotic holidays, chauffeur-driven cars and expensive hotels and restaurants.

She told one victim she was a multi-millionaire company boss and even told would-be husbands that she was dying of cancer so they would marry her.

Newcastle Crown Court was told the extent of the femme fatale’s crime spree, including more than 80 offences, was worth £254,000 (€385,000), including £208,000 on fast cars.

Penniless Golightly, of Meadowfield Gardens, Walkerville, Newcastle upon Tyne, wove an astonishing web of deceit. She even ripped off her own family, using her mother and grandmother’s credit cards.

Police began to probe after her extravagant lifestyle ended in huge bills for the men she romanced.

Jailing the conwoman for two years, Judge David Wood told her: “Over a period of quite a long time you befriended a number of men and pretended to them you were rich, terminally ill and in need of a husband.

“You encouraged them by offering lavish gifts whilst all the time you had stolen their cheque books or credit cards and were using them for your own advantage.”

Judge Wood accepted the defendant was suffering from a personality disorder but said the offences of theft, deception and attempted deception were so serious as to merit jail.

Prosecutor Tim Gittins told the court the first victim to fall prey to her charms was Chris Williams, whom Golightly first met in May 2004. She told him she was suffering terminal breast cancer and did not want to die without being a bride. They married just before Christmas 2004, at Gateshead Register Office.

Golightly told her bridegroom they had been given a wedding gift of £500 from her father — it from Mr Williams’ account without his knowledge. By April 2005, Mr Williams ended the marriage and ordered his new bride out of his house after discovering debts of more than £20,000, Mr Gittins explained.

She tried to marry another man in 2005 but it did not go ahead as the registrar did not turn up and Golightly was still married to Mr Williams, it was heard.

She then continued to con other men, the court heard.

Golightly, who broke down in tears several times during the hearing, pleaded guilty to 17 offences, including theft, deception and attempted deception.

Her family were in court to see her jailed and refused to speak afterwards.

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