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Police probe after Paignton old people's home closes

By Herald Express  |  Posted: January 17, 2013

Devon and Cornwall Police

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POLICE are investigating allegations of financial irregularities following the closure of a Paignton old people's home.

Detectives this week executed three search warrants at addresses in Torbay and made one arrest.

One of the searches was made at Manor Cottage residential home in Manor Crescent, which closed suddenly just after New Year.

A former member of staff is understood to have been arrested and bailed in connection to the police operation.

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Three warrants were executed on Monday under section 8 of the Police and Criminal Evidence Act, one at the care home and two at other private addresses in Torbay.

Det Sgt Pete Rendell, who is leading the investigation, said: "We have made one arrest. The person has been interviewed and released on bail for further inquiries.

"We are looking at all aspects of the finances of residents at the home."

It is understood the inquiry began after concerns were made about sums of money which were alleged to have been missing from the bank accounts of one or more elderly residents at the care home.

Police seized a large amount of documents and say the inquiry could take some time.

A joint Safeguarding team involving police, Torbay Council and the NHS trust was set up to care for the elderly residents.

At the time of the closure Torbay and Southern Devon Health and Care NHS Trust said they had stepped in at short notice to provide new homes for the residents at Manor Cottage when the owner fell ill.

The family-run home, which looks after people with dementia or requiring palliative care, was also hit by the news that its manager had found employment elsewhere.

A Torbay Council spokesman said: "Because it is now a police matter we don't have any comment."

Simon Blackburn, spokesman for the NHS in South Devon, said he was unaware of a police investigation.

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