A football club boss has been spared prison after scamming a woman out of more than £160,000.
Mitchell Cowling, general manager at Maldon and Tiptree FC, of the Isthmian League North, convinced her to give him money to invest in e-cigarettes, clothing and Christmas trees.
But he kept the money, spending most of it on gambling and holidays.
Cowling, 36, of Colchester Road, Great Totham, Essex, was handed a two-year suspended sentence on 10 November.
The offences, which took place between 2014 and 2016, occurred after Cowling convinced the woman, then in her 40s, to invest in a variety of business ventures.
Essex Police said the victim "never saw a penny" of any profits of the projects or investments.
Detectives discovered Cowling had spent more than £148,000 on gambling websites and nearly £6,000 on holidays.
Cowling admitted fraud by false representation and making or supplying an article for the use of fraud at Chelmsford Crown Court.
He was handed a two-year prison sentence, suspended for two years, and ordered to undertake 250 hours of unpaid work, as well as paying the victim £6,000 in compensation.
Det Sgt Neil Tremain, who led the investigation, said the sentence was "the culmination of six years of persistence" by officers.
"The victim gave him huge amounts of money, in good faith, to invest in businesses with the aim of giving her family a comfortable future," he said.
"Instead, Cowling frittered it away on gambling websites and luxury holidays."
Maldon and Tiptree FC has been approached for comment.