A NURSE fraudulently earned £90,000 from the NHS after concealing the fact he had been fired from his previous post for swearing at a vulnerable patient and making a sexual comment to a colleague.

James Adams, 53, lied on three consecutive forms he filled in for positions he secured - and claimed he had no previous dismissals.

In fact, the married father had been sacked form his first nursing job with Durham and Darlington Priority Services NHS Trust for gross misconduct.

Yesterday, he was jailed for ten months for fraudulently claiming £89,460 from his employers between 2008 and 2012 - jobs he would never have got if he had told the truth.

His deceit was only uncovered when an NHS manager recognised his picture in a newsletter as part of a street triage team and realised he had previously been dismissed.

She aired her concerns that Adams would be working with vulnerable patients and his lies were laid bare, Teesside Crown Court heard.

Prosecutor James Kemp said: "In April 2002, the defendant got a job with Durham and Darlington Priority Services NHS Trust as a primary mental health care link worker.

"Two years hence in April 2004 he was the subject of an internal disciplinary hearing facing allegations of inappropriate behaviour to staff and a vulnerable patient.which involved swearing at her (the patient) and asking the member of staff to purchase certain items of a sexual nature.

"That resulted in a finding of gross misconduct upon which he was dismissed. Subsequently he appealed but the appeal panel upheld his dismissal."

The court was told that Adams, of Windsor Road, Middlesbrough, never accepted the dismissal or the results of the appeal's findings.

The court heard he went on to apply for another job in 2008 and lied on the application form.

On applying for a job as community alcohol nurse with the Tees, Esk and Wear Valleys NHS Foundation Trust he said he had never been dismissed from previous employment for a disciplinary matter.

Adams went on to win the job and became a "respected" member of the team.

In November 2009, he then applied for a similar but different post within the same trust and again told the same lie on the application form - again winning the post.

He continued to work until his lies unravelled last year when he applied and won - again with the assistance of lies - a job with the street triage team with the same trust working as a mental health nurse.

Mr Kemp said: "On June 12th last year Jackie Dyson, a manager, saw the foundation trusts's newsletter, which is called Insight.

"She saw a picture of the triage team's members and recognised Mr Adams as a person who had previously been employed by the County Durham and Darlington Trust.

"She was aware he had been dismissed and was concerned he was working with that Trust with vulnerable people."

Adams was investigated and found to have lied on each application form. Jane Foley, mitigating, said: "The defendant failed to inform his prospective employers because he considered it would be detrimental to his prospects of gaining employment.

"It was a very foolish thing for a man of 53 years of age to have done, a man of previous good character.

"He has been a nurse 12 years, he is a man with a responsible job, he was good at his job and he was respected within his role as a nurse. he has been embarrassed by what he did.

"It is sad that a man with such positive attributes has fallen from grace in this way. He has fallen from grace in a rather spectacular fashion."

Judge Simon Bourne-Arton, QC, told Adams: "It is clear from your profession that you want to help others and for that you should be commended.

"But it is essential that the public has trust not only in the National Health Service but trust those working within it and in particular the nursing profession.

"They have to know those holding nursing qualifications and experience are fit for the job and are to be trusted.

"There are of course a number of well publicised cases where the NHS has fallen far from the high standards expected by the public."