Sunday, June 14, 2009

Wedding couple on the run

Police are hunting a cash-strapped couple who got married in an elaborate wedding costing £10,000 - and then ran off without paying. The couple, named by local businesses as Alan Bennett and Lorraine Vickery, from Exeter, Devon, were married in Jersey on February 5.

Guests drank champagne and were entertained by a local band but once the party was over, the pair vanished without settling the bill. All the cheques they left in payment bounced.

Jersey Police have launched a criminal investigation into the alleged fraud after at least six businesses on the island remain unpaid.

The couple had a traditional church ceremony, decorated with elaborate flower arrangements, before hosting an extravagant marquee reception for their 15 guests. Their luxury three course meal, flowing Moet and Chandon champagne costing £70 per bottle, and entertainment from a local band cost a total of £2,000 which remains unpaid.

David Bridges, owner of the Bleu Soleil campsite, where the couple held their reception, said: "There weren't many guests but it was a pretty flash do and the best man came from Australia. "They had the time of their lives and didn't pay a penny for it. The bit that really gets me is that they didn't even pay the rector who married them."

Businesses who provided flowers, a marquee, wedding cake, hotels rooms and suit hire all claim to have been left out of pocket, with a total value of around £10,000. Det Insp Kevin Molloy, of Jersey's Criminal Investigation Department, said: "Following complaints from members of the public, a police investigation is ongoing."

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