Woman who stole £18,000 from bosses is spared from jail

Macclesfield Express - - MACC LADS JACKET FOR AUCTION AT GIG - STU­ART GREER

AWOMAN who stole £18,000 from her bosses has avoided jail.

Katie Jones, 25, from Mac­cles­field, was work­ing as a fi­nance as­sis­tant when she si­phoned off vast num­bers of high street vouch­ers her com­pany used as in­cen­tives.

She was caught when her boss at Um­brella Lim- ited in Wilm­slow was pre­vented from ac­cess­ing a record of the vouch­ers.

Jones, of Brook­lands Av­enue, ad­mit­ted theft by em­ployee, claim­ing she stole be­cause of a raft of per­sonal prob­lems.

She was sen­tenced to 12 months in prison, sus­pended for two years.

Sen­tenc­ing Judge Recorder Neville Bid­dle said: “For a num­ber of years you were trusted em­ployee of the com­pany. But over a pe­riod you stole £18,000 of those vouch­ers. It has af­fected, un­der­mined and dam­aged the com­pany.

“Peo­ple are en­ti­tled to one mis­take in life. You must pull your­self to­gether and get a grip.”

The court heard that Um­brella Ltd is a fi­nan­cial ser­vices com­pany work­ing with re­cruit­ment agen­cies.

Jo Maxwell, pros­e­cut­ing, said: “High street vouch­ers were given to re­cruit­ment con­sul­tant as a re­ward for plac­ing peo­ple in a job.

“The vouch­ers were kept in a locked drawer. Jones was a fi­nan­cial as­sis­tant and was in charge of or­der­ing and dis­tribut­ing the vouch­ers.

“In June 2016 a spread­sheet where the vouch­ers are recorded had dis­ap­peared from the main drive.

“Jones told her boss she had moved it to her own desktop, but that meant no one else had ac­cess to it. It was then dis­cov­ered that a large num­ber was miss­ing.

“When ques­tioned about it Jones was sheep­ish and eva­sive in her re­sponses. She was later signed off work sick.”

The court heard that bosses at Um­brella Ltd mounted an in­ves­ti­ga­tion and Jones was dis­missed in the Novem­ber.

Steven McHugh, de­fend­ing Jones, said “She had stopped steal­ing the vouch­ers be­cause she felt guilty. She has been ex­tremely dis­tressed and re­morse­ful.

She tried to pay back some of the money. She wishes she could turn the clock back.

“There was a cul­mi­na­tion of loss of her part­ner’s job, loss of their home and debt. It be­came too much. This was also linked to med­i­cal is­sues.”

Jones was also sen­tenced to 20 days Re­ha­bil­i­ta­tion Ac­tiv­ity Re­quire­ment.

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