Detective’s wife ‘never had cancer’

The wife of a “corrupt” detective from Castleford accused of making thousands of pounds by stealing drugs told a jury she never had cancer.

Nicholas McFadden allegedly told fellow officers in West Yorkshire’s Police organised crime group that his extra spending in 2011 was due to a critical illness payment paid out after his wife Clair was diagnosed with cancer.

Leeds Crown Court heard last week how Mrs McFadden told prosecutor Paul Greaney she had never been diagnosed with a life-threatening disease such as cancer and never received a £100,000 critical illness payment.

Mr Greaney QC, said: “Have you ever been diagnosed with any illness that might be regarded as life-threatening, such as cancer?”

“No,” she replied.

Nicholas McFadden, 37 formerly of Pasture Drive, is accused of making £600,000 with the help of his brother, Simon McFadden, by stealing drugs seized by the police and plotting to put them back on the streets. Mrs McFadden said her detective constable husband told her he had been doing lots of overtime for double pay, that a pension had matured and he had remortgaged his previous house in Ossett.

When he arranged for work to be done at their family home, he said he had got it cheap through friends and she accepted his account.

“He was my husband and a police officer,” she told the court.

Also giving evidence, Det Con Tanya Strangeway – who was engaged to Nicholas McFadden in 2006 and became close to him again in 2011 – said he bought her £10,000 gift-wrapped in bundles of £20 and £10 notes and bought her a car.

He told her he had sold the Ossett house and she assumed the cash came from that.

Nicholas McFadden denies four charges of stealing drugs and four charges of conspiracy to supply, but had admitted one of money laundering.

Simon McFadden, 41, of Harehills, denies four charges of conspiracy to supply drugs and one of money laundering.