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Fool for love: Organist sold mum’s house to share cash with escort girl
A FORMER church organist who fell in love with an escort girl sold his
95-year-old mother’s house to pay for their relationship.
Margaret Butler was left homeless when her son David swindled her out of £30,000 from the sale of their Bicester home.
The besotted 69-year-old former music teacher gave the money to Rachel Read, 39, who then left him penniless and destitute after ending their 12-year relationship.
His “obsession” with the woman 30 years his junior drove the former music teacher to commit an act of betrayal that stunned his family and led to him starting a nine-month prison sentence last night
Over the course of a 12-year relationship Butler used every penny he took from his mother to continue his affair with escort Rachel Read, who he met after answering a newspaper advert, only for her to leave him with nothing.
A former organist at St Edburg’s Church in Bicester, Butler was described at Oxford Crown Court as “a broken man” who finally turned himself in when he discovered Read had cleared out the bank account they shared.
He was convicted of asking her to forge his mother’s signature and selling 95-year-old Margaret Butler’s home in Banbury Road, Bicester, without her knowledge.
In November 2011 this caused the elderly dementia sufferer to be evicted and with nowhere to live.
Butler appeared alongside his ex-lover at Oxford Crown Court on Tuesday to be sentenced after both were convicted of forgery and acquiring stolen property following a trial.
Read, of Frilford, near Abingdon, was also found guilty of one charge of fraud.
Peter Du Feu, defending Butler, said: “She seduced him with sex, but he seduced her with money”.
Towards the end of 2008 the pair sold the house in Banbury Road, Bicester, where Mr Butler lived with his mother. Read forged the elderly woman’s signature on the property’s title document and the pair received around a £30,000 profit after paying off around £30,000 of costs and debts.
This was placed into a joint bank account, but within months the escort had withdrawn all the money.
During the trial Butler was reduced to living in O’Hanlon House Homeless Shelter, in Luther Street, Oxford.
Mr Du Feu said: “He lost his home, all his money, he was on the street and in hospital for a while, and now lives at the homeless shelter around the corner. He has almost suffered more than anything the court can now do to him. How much lower can a man sink?”
Defending Read, Edmund Walters said she had turned her life around in the years since the offences and had worked with the Samaritans.
Judge Patrick Eccles sentenced Butler to nine months in prison for forgery and acquiring stolen property. Read received 12 months for the same offences, and one charge of fraud.
Butler has one previous conviction in March 1982 for sexually assaulting five young girls who were taking piano lessons. He was fined £2,000.