A FORMER university has been given a suspended prison sentence for harassing his ex.

Millionaire John Harley was in a two-year relationship with Raine Lacey, but after she ended it, he tried to get her sacked from her job.

The 66-year-old stepped down from his unpaid role as chairman of the board of governors at University of Brighton after admitting the charge.

In a three-month campaign he left items including plant pots and a vacuum cleaner outside a GP surgery were Ms Lacey worked.

He begged her daughter to speak with her, then also delivered items to her house in Tunbridge Wells.

Prosecutors said he also penned letters to all three doctors at the surgery, questioning her fitness to work.

He also wrote to her children, threatening to defame her, and showed “no remorse”.

The harassment left Ms Lacey “living in fear”.

Harley, of Gallipot Hill in Hartfield near East Grinstead, was sentenced to a five-week jail term, which has been suspended for 18-months.

It started in November last year, when Ms Lacey emailed him to tell him the relationship was over, and to leave her alone.

In the email she set out her reasons for leaving him.

He then begged her daughter to speak to Ms Lacey before writing the letters to the doctors a week later.

The letters are not believed to have been read by the doctors.

She complained to the police in December, and officers told Harley to stop.

But in January this year, Ms Lacey saw him pull up in his car outside her daughter’s home in Tunbridge Wells when she was visiting.

At Hastings Magistrates’ Court last month Paul Edwards, prosecuting, said: “During the course of the harassment the victim felt the need to change her appearance.

“She changed her car through fear he was tracking her. The defendant is a very wealthy man and the victim feels he has the resources to harm her and he thinks he is above the law.”

Harley, who resigned from his role at the university when the allegations surfaced, claimed he launched the three month campaign of harassment because he “felt alone”.

Tanya Robinson, defending, said until this incident Harley had been of “impeccable character”.

She added: “He continues to be a committed family man and has done a great deal of charity work.

“Importantly it was never his intention to cause Miss Lacey alarm or distress. He says he felt very alone.”