A former West Mercia Police officer has been handed a six-month suspended prison sentence for fraud by false representation.

Former PC Ethan Aherne, 28, based in south Worcestershire, appeared at Kidderminster Magistrates’ Court today (Friday 29 September 2023).

Aherne was off sick claiming that he had a back injury, but was in fact playing rugby on a regular basis and also took another job while still employed by West Mercia Police. 

As part of the investigation, officers from the force anti-corruption unit travelled to Cardiff where they saw him playing rugby.

In addition to the suspended sentence, he was also ordered to carry out 120 hours of unpaid work and pay back the £13,000 of police salary he obtained fraudulently during his sickness period.

Aherne resigned from the force in December 2022 after 15 months’ service.

He will now face misconduct proceedings.

Assistant Chief Constable Rachel Jones, said: “I’m pleased that Aherne has faced justice today for his offences.

“Officers have a gruelling job and we have a wide range of support mechanisms in place to support them with both their physical and mental health.  Aherne totally abused the support systems in place, taking up valuable resources and money.

“His actions were dishonest and immoral.  Officers like him have no place in our force.

“Today’s outcome is another example of our continued mission to root out corrupt officers.”