A disgraced NHS executive who lied his way into a string of top jobs has been ordered to sell his boat and cash in a pension plan to repay some of the money he earned through his fraud.

Former social worker John Andrewes, formerly from Christow, talked his way into well paid jobs running a hospice and two NHS trusts by inventing fake degrees and qualifications.

He ended up as chairman of the Royal Cornwall Hospitals Trust, running one of the largest NHS organisations in the South West, which included Treliske Hospital in Truro among its assets.

Andrewes’s frauds led to him being overpaid by £643,000 over more than a decade at the St Margaret’s Hospice in Taunton, the Torbay Care Trust, and in Cornwall.

He was jailed for two years at Exeter Crown Court last year but brought back to face confiscation of his assets under the Proceeds of Crime Act.

Recorder Mr Martin Meeke, QC, rejected his claim that he was entitled to keep the pay because he had worked hard and effectively, regardless of how he came to get the jobs.

He set the amount by which Andrewes had benefited as £643,000 but assessed his available assets as only £97,737.24.

He ordered him to pay this sum within three months or go back to jail for a further year.

The judge said his employment had been obtained unlawfully and that it would be contrary to the public interest for him not to repay the money.

He said:"I bear in mind the defendant was narrowly preferred to another candidate when he was appointed to the hospice and those who appointed him considered honesty and integrity to be central to the result.

"These were qualities which he clearly lacked. I do not consider this order to be disproportionate. The recoverable amount represents less than 15 per cent of the benefit figure."

Andrewes intends to appeal against the decision, so the order is likely to come into effect after that case is resolved.

The assets he must sell include a half share in a Dutch barge, a share of his profit from the sale of the house in Topsham, an insurance payout for a Seat Leon car, premium bonds, and a pension plan

Andrewes, aged 64, of Flood Street, Totnes, and formerly of High Street, Topsham, admitted deception and two counts of fraud. He has completed his two year sentence and is now out on licence.

Andrewes’s barrister Miss Ros Collins said he did not derive any benefit from crime because he performed all his jobs well and was entitled to be paid for his work.

They also say it would be disproportionate to strip him of assets which he built up while running a hospice in Taunton, a community care trust in Torbay and the main hospital trust in Cornwall.

She said:”He paid back all the money he was paid by working. He only received payment for the work that he did.”

Mr Cameron Brown, prosecuting, said:”There was a conscious misrepresentation and there are public policy reasons why he should be deprived of his earnings.”

Andrewes’s lies were only exposed when he was running the Cornwall trust and staff became suspicious and a check was made on his CV.

It found a trail of falsified degrees and diplomas dating back to when he got his job at the hospice by claiming to have run a charity when in fact he was a humble youth worker.

Andrewes earned more than £100,000 a year until his fraud was unmasked in 2015.

He styled himself as Dr Andrewes and falsified not only his educational qualifications but also his work experience with a series of charities.

He claimed to have been managing director of a youth charity called Groundworks when in fact he had spent most of his career as a probation officer, customs officer or youth worker.

His only formal qualification was a Higher Education Certificate in Social Work from Bristol University.

In a series of job applications, he provided CVs which claimed her had a PhD in Leadership and Success from Plymouth University, where he said he had written a thesis called Women in Power.

He lied about having a Masters in Business Administration from Edinburgh University and degree from Bristol. He also claimed to have a Diploma in Advanced Accountancy.

Police were called in when questions were raised about his background when he was chairman of the Cornish trust. His former home at Christow was raided and the false CVs seized.