Nurse who made false grandfather rape claim jailed

Picture: Police Scotland
Picture: Police Scotland
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A NURSE was jailed yesterday after falsely accusing her grandfather of rape to claim inheritance money.

Natalie Mortimer, 25, told police she had been sexually abused by her grandfather when she was a child.

But her mother, Susan Simpson, began to have doubts about the story and Mortimer eventually admitted she had made it up.

She had previously been told she would be entitled to a share of inheritance money from her grandfather Gordon Ritchie, along with her half-sister.

However, she believed that she would get all the cash if her grandfather was sent to prison.

The police were later informed that her story had been fabricated and she was charged with wasting police time.

Mortimer was told that she had committed a “truly evil” crime when she was jailed for 22 months at Aberdeen Sheriff Court yesterday.

Sheriff Graeme Buchanan told her: “False allegations of rape and other sexual offences are very serious because they put doubts in the minds of jurors in genuine cases and they subject innocent people such as Mr Ritchie to a terrifying ordeal of suspicion and investigation by police.

“What you did to Mr Ritchie was truly evil and despicable and there is only one appropriate sentence for this behaviour, and that is imprisonment.”

Mortimer, of Aberdeen, lodged a complaint with police about her grandfather on various occasions between August 2012 and March last year.

She claimed she had been repeatedly sexually assaulted and raped by Mr Ritchie, wasting 175 hours of police time at a cost of more than £3,000.

The nurse had been living with her grandfather and grandmother, Margaret, before she made the false accusations.

Mr Ritchie had even paid for Mortimer to go to counselling when she began suffering mood swings.

She moved to London, then went to a police station in Chiswick the following year.

Mortimer claimed to have been raped by Mr Ritchie over a two-year period when she was at primary school.

The distraught pensioner was on holiday with Mortimer’s 15-year-old half-sister when police began investigating the claims. The former foster carer had to cut his holiday short and was asked not to have any contact with children under 16.

Previous foster children who had been in his care were also questioned.

Mortimer spoke to many detectives as part of their investigation.

Officers were told she had lied after she confessed the crime to her mother, who contacted the police.

Yesterday, defence lawyer Lynne Freeland said her client felt jealousy towards her half-­sister and now realised she should have addressed those feelings a long time ago.

Ms Freeland said: “She is deeply ashamed and is embarrassed by her actions and has described it as greedy, selfish and cruel.

“Miss Mortimer has huge emotional issues. Sadly, she can’t turn back time on this horrendous crime.”

Ms Freeland said her client realised that her relationship with her family had now been destroyed and said she now led a solitary existence.

She added: “She understands that this will have torn lives apart.”

Mortimer previously admitted a charge of wasting police time through temporarily depriving the public of their services when she appeared at Aberdeen Sheriff Court.