Have you been betrayed by a family member? Do you want to tell your story?
When Adam Gray contacted us with his devastating story about how his own mum betrayed him, we knew a number of publications would be interested in speaking to him. He was the son of city worker killed in the 7/7 London bombings and he recently won a heartbreaking court battle against his OWN mother – after she squandered his £50,000 compensation payout funding her lavish life.
Adam Gray was just 11 when his father Richard was blown up by a backpack wearing terrorist close to Aldgate tube station in 2005. Because of his age, a payout made to him by the government’s criminal compensation authority was placed into a trust fund until he was 18.
But when the time came that he asked for his share, his mother Louise, 42, confessed she had spent it all on a high rolling lifestlyle which included four new cars, shopping sprees at Selfridge’s and dinner at the Ritz.
Adam’s dad Richard, a 41-year-old tax manager from Ipswich, was one of eight people who died on the circle line train including Bradford born bomber Shehzad Tanweer, 22. In the aftermath of the attack, grieving Louise was left to raise her two children alone. The family were awarded a total of £400,000 by the Criminal Injuries Compensation Authority with £250,000 going to Louise, £100,000 going to her daughter and Adam receiving a £50,000 payout. But according to Adam, with the money came a change in his mother’s day to day life.
She quit her job as care worker before embarking on a life of indulgence and spending, splashing out on a jacuzzi for the family home, four new cars and seven chihuahua dogs. Throughout his teens, Adam said he was wary of his mother’s new fondness for splashing the cash. But when he was given access to his share of the compensation in July 2012 Adam worried he would be unable to cope with such a large amount at such a young age. He took the mature decision to transfer it to his mother for what he thought was safe keeping. But before he transferred the money, he made her assure him that her spending days were behind him.
Sadly, less than two years later, when he asked for the money to fund a move to London, an apprenticeship and eventually a move abroad, Louise confessed that she has splurged away his money. When confronted with the truth, Louise vowed to repay all the money she had lost. But despite her remorse, she continued to shirk the debt, eventually forcing Adam to take the heartrenading decision of pursuing his mother in the civil courts.
After written evidence from both sides, judges found in his favour and awarded £43,750 – money that is yet to be paid. Speaking after the case, he said: ‘No words can describe how painful the past eight months have been,’ explains Adam, ‘I never thought I’d be forced to take my own mother to court for compensation which was left to me after my father’s tragic death.
‘Trying to understand how my own mother could steal from me with such ease is difficult. To think she spent money which was given to me to safeguard my future and just spent it on materialist rubbish is extremely hurtful.’
We placed Adam’s story exclusively with the Sunday People and Femail followed a week later. We’re now in the process of securing him a magazine deal.
Have you been betrayed by a family member? Want to know if your story will work for a national paper? Ask one of the TTTP team by emailing email@example.com
Or you can complete the online form on the right hand side of this page. You only need to provide a little information and one of our team will get back to you. All information is treated as confidential until you advise otherwise.
If you would like to read more about the story selling process, you can find lots of information on our How to Sell My Story page.