POLICE OFFICERS have executed search warrants at properties in Carmarthenshire, Swansea, and Kent. Their actions are part of an investigation into allegations of corruption involving the
Wellness Village project at Delta Lakes, Llanelli.
On Thursday, Aug 8, The Herald received a tip-off which identified three properties in Carmarthenshire at which officers from Tarian, the Regional Organised Crime Unit, executed those warrants.
The tip-off was anonymous. As is usual with such tip-offs, we sought to verify it by reference to independent and reliable sources.
As a result of our further enquiries, we can confirm that Police executed a search warrant at the home of controversial former Carmarthenshire County Council CEO Mark James.
The use of a search warrant in such circumstances is not unusual. The use of one is not a sign of any criminality or dishonesty on Mr James’ part. It is possible the warrant was procured routinely to preserve material which might assist an ongoing investigation.
Police executed a further warrant at County Hall, Carmarthen.
Again, the use of a warrant is not a sign of any criminality. Police acted to obtain documentary evidence and computer material, including email trails, to help with their investigation.
It is entirely possible that Police learned a lesson from a separate probe of Pembrokeshire County Council. In that case, officers failed to secure evidence which was subsequently either lost or destroyed.
A separate Council press release states the local authority is ready and willing to help the Police in any way they can and is already offering any assistance it can to investigators.
That statement points out that a review by the WAO and an internal probe by a firm of solicitors found no administrative or compliance issues affecting the tender processes for the Wellness Village.
The Herald has been given a further address at which a search warrant was executed. That third address has not been confirmed by all of our sources and, accordingly, we do not report it here.
As we went to press, Carmarthenshire County Council exclusively confirmed to us that a search warrant was executed at County Hall last week.
Rapper who bombed wrong house jailed for almost 10 years
A WELSH rapper who accidentley ‘bombed’ a wrong house following a feud with a rival has been labelled ‘pathetic’ and ‘childish’ by a judge before sending them to prison.
Appearing at Swansea Crown Court on Monday (Jun 13), Michael Athernought was sentenced to almost 10 years in prison.
The court heard how Athernought, 25 of Tontine Street, Swansea, had thrown a petrol bomb at a house he believed belonged to a fellow rapper Ricky Williams following a feud between the two.
However, the defendant bombed the house of a woman and her teenage son.
The incident happened at a residential property on Clyndu Street, Morriston at around 3am on November 16 of last year.
The woman awoke to a fire alarm going off and neighbours banging her front door.
L;uckily for Helen Davies and her son, neighbours had managed to break her door down and get the pair to safety.
The court heard how Athernought had posted a video directed at Mr Williams where threats were made to ‘burn your house to the ground’ and ‘war means war’.
Athernought was arrested the same day and officers from South Wales Police found a jerrycan of petrol and a towel with pieces missing.
Whilst sentencing, Judge Paul Thomas QC, said: “A more pathetic, childish reason for acting as you did is frankly quite difficult to imagine.
“Instead of acting as a grown-up you decided, because you think of yourself as some sort of pseudo-gangster, to make a video.
“In that video you made threats to burn his house down. It was as graphically threatening as it was pathetically childish.
“In actual fact, due to your incompetence, you got the wrong house.
“Obviously, you seem to think that you can get away with what you want, because you’re in some way above all of that, being, of course, an important rapper.”
Alternought was given an extended sentence of nine years and nine months.
The defendant will serve four years and six months in prison. The remainder of the sentence will be served on licence.
Trimsaran go top after beating Bynea
TRIMSARAN moved to the top of League 3 West B on Saturday (Jan 8) as they beat Bynea 39-5.
It was the only game to be played in the Division as others battled covid-19 cases and waterlogged pitches following overnight rain.
Lee Bates had scored two tries in Trimsaran’s last game before Christmas and he carried on his good form with a hat trick of tries on Saturday.
Iwan Green and Chris Lacey also went over for the home side who were also awarded a penalty try.
There were three conversions and a penalty from Corey Phillips as Trimsaran secured a bonus point win.
Trim now sit top of the table, unbeaten in their opening four games in the league, and they are now level on points with second placed Tumble who have played a game more.
On Saturday, January 15, Trimsaran travel to Tumble while Bynea will look to get back to winning ways when they host New Dock Stars.
PHOTO by Darren Harries
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