A lowlife dad conned his home town out of hundreds of pounds – by claiming he was dying from CANCER.
Scumbag Simon Swift, 39, tricked his own family into believing he had months to live and begged them to help him raise funds for life-extending drugs.
The dad-of-three used his children to sell charity tickets for him and even appeared on the front page of his local newspaper to publicise his campaign.
But stunned staff at the hospital where he claimed to have received treatment exposed his lies when they read about his fundraising events.
Doctors rang the police and last Thursday the former builder was arrested on suspicion of fraud by misrepresentation.
Officers also seized cash and gifts from his home in Rugby, Warks.
Swift has admitted he had lied about having cancer and claimed he did it because he was ”a bit thick”.
Swift said: ”I’m so sorry. My biggest regret is hurting my children.
”I never meant to consciously deceive or hurt anyone.
”I know I’m a lot of things. I’m no angel. But I’m not nasty or horrible. I’m just a bit thick.”
Swift told family and friends he had been diagnosed with terminal cancer in May.
On May 20 he appeared on the front page of the Rugby Advertiser and asked readers for cash claiming he needed the money to pay for life-extending drugs.
He claimed the cancer had started in his spine and spread to his brain and he only had months to live.
He received hundreds of pounds in donations and gifts from generous people around his home town of Rugby, Warks.
Heartbroken kids Tom, 19, Beth, 15, and Jack 12, rallied round their dad in what they believed were their final days together.
They even helped him sell hundreds of tickets at £5 each for a massive fundraising event at the Rugby Lions RFC which was due to be held on June 26.
But his fantasy fell apart when a hospital worker discovered he did not appear on any patient register and called the police.
His eldest son Tom has blasted his dad and vowed he would never see him again.
He stormed: ”When I found out my dad was supposedly dying I wanted to spend all the time I could with him.
”I’m like a loose cannon at the moment. You just can’t self-diagnose something like cancer.
”I don’t want anything more to do with my dad.”
But shameless Swift has tried to blame the INTERNET for persuading him he had cancer.
He said: ”I’d been ill for a while. I had aches and pains, was coughing blood and was sick.
”I looked on the internet and convinced myself I had cancer.
”The worst thing anyone can do is look on the internet to make their own diagnosis.
”I’ve been so stupid.”
Swift also tried to wriggle out of the police charges, claiming he always intended to give the money to charity.
He said: ”I didn’t do it for financial gain. I didn’t crave the attention.
”I genuinely wanted the money for cancer research.”
Martin Turner, director of communications for NHS Warwickshire, said: ”NHS Warwickshire can confirm that Simon Swift is not an NHS cancer patient within the county.”
A spokeswoman for Warwickshire Police said: ”Police last week arrested a 39-year-old man on suspicion of fraud by misrepresentation.”
Swift was given police bail and ordered to return to the police station next month.