Funeral director who spied on women with hidden camera spared jail

Nigel Anthony

Nigel Anthony - Credit: Archant

A FUNERAL director who installed a hidden camera to spy on women using his bathroom has been handed a suspended jail term.

Nigel Anthony, 43, of New Street, St Neots, pleaded guilty to three counts of voyeurism, and was sentenced to three months in prison, suspended for 18 months.

A hearing at Cambridge Crown Court on Tuesday was told that the camera was discovered after Anthony had moved out of the house he shared with his wife, in Highlands, Royston, following the couple’s divorce.

Prosecutor Stephen Mather said: “The spy camera was hidden in the end panel of the bath and captured anyone using the toilet. There was a wire which led to the loft, where a video recorder and three tapes were found.

“It became apparent that someone had to be in the loft to start the recording.”

The tapes, recorded between 2006-2008, showed two women using the bathroom, as well as girl who was aged 15 or 16 at the time.

Mr Mather said: “When questioned by police, Mr Anthony admitted installing the camera eight years previously for the purpose of sexual gratification.

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“He said he had used the camera approximately 12 times over six or seven years, with the last time being just before he left the property in September 2012.”

Father-of-two Anthony is area manager for Lodge Brothers funeral directors’, which owns Cecil Newling in Royston and T.L. Cobbold in St Neots.

He had no previous convictions, and defence lawyer Phillippa Ellis said he was under extreme emotional stress at the time of the incidents due to the breakdown of his marriage.

She said: “He has sought counselling, and he takes responsibility for what he’s done and understands the impact of his actions have had on other people. He presents no risk to the public.

Judge Gareth Hawkesworth said: “Though this is out of character, this was a deliberate act, and you must seek help over the next 18 months to ensure there aren’t more problems further down the line.”

As well as the suspended jail term, Anthony was also ordered to pay costs of £150. He will also have to sign the sex offenders register.