A man attempted to obtain a law degree from a British college by posing as a former female graduate and telling the school he’d had gender reassignment surgery.
A South East Northumberland Magistrates’ Court heard that Nathan Hogg, 30, emailed Durham University pretending to be the woman who had previously attended the school, the Evening Chronicle reported this week.
Hogg was convicted of the offense and ordered to pay the victim roughly $650 in compensation and perform 12 months of community service.
The Blyth, Northumberland resident falsely claimed to be undergoing a female to male transition and asked the school to issue him a degree certificate in his new name: Nathan Hogg.
A university staff member replied by asking Hogg for the victim’s existing degree certificate. Hogg provided a fake document to the school, the court heard.
“It looks, on the face of it, a very convincing document, where the defendant has signed in, what appears to be, his former name of [the woman] and new assumed name Nathan Hogg,” said prosecutor James Long.
The unsuccessful ruse took place sometime between December 2018 and June of this year and was uncovered when the victim happened to contact the university for a job reference.
The school learned the woman, who graduated from Durham with a degree in law, was not undergoing gender reassignment surgery, and contacted police.
Hogg reportedly found the former student’s information on LinkedIn and told police he “was depressed at the time and in a bad way.”
“I contacted the university with an idea to get a degree to make me feel better about myself. I did not use it, I threw it in the bin,” Hogg said, according to his lawyer, Paul Dunn.
“The whole matter has caused me to feel violated and upset that someone has purported to be me,” the victim said in a statement to the court.