For­mer pub man­ager, 35, is jailed af­ter he stole £14,000

Gloucestershire Echo - - THURSDAY 04.07 - John HAWKINS gloslive­[email protected]­plc.com

THE for­mer man­ager of a pop­u­lar Chel­tenham pub wept in court when the judge sen­tenced him to 18 months in jail.

Steven Holmes, 35, of Cae Bra­cia, Brid­gend, South Wales was found guilty of theft af­ter a trial at Glouces­ter Crown Court last week.

Holmes, fa­ther of a six-year-old son, stole £14,225 from the Bot­tle of Sauce in Al­bion Street, Chel­tenham, be­tween July 2017 and Jan­uary 2018, the court was told.

He was re­spon­si­ble for cash­ing up at the end of shifts and for bank­ing the money.

Most of the cash went miss­ing when Holmes was on duty and it stopped dis­ap­pear­ing af­ter he was dis­missed.

Dur­ing the trial Holmes de­nied he had stolen any money but he ad­mit­ted that he had a gam­bling habit.

Sen­tenc­ing Holmes, Judge Ian Lawrie QC told him: “You were em­ployed in a re­spon­si­ble po­si­tion and you breached a high de­gree of trust in the wort pos­si­ble way.

“Over a pe­riod of seven months you

His gam­bling habit may be a far big­ger provblem than he admits

Lloyd Jenk­ins

stole a sig­nif­i­cant amount of money for a small com­pany.”

Ear­lier, de­fend­ing lawyer Lloyd Jenk­ins said: “His gam­bling habit may be a far big­ger prob­lem than he admits.

“He has a lov­ing fam­ily and good friends and he has let them all down. His fam­ily, es­pe­cially his mother, is dev­as­tated. He has a young son and he is a good fa­ther.”

Mr Jenk­ins urged the judge “not to crush this man” with a lengthy prison sen­tence.

The court also heard that the Bot­tle of Sauce was now do­ing very well.

Speaking af­ter­wards Leo John­son of Dodo Pub Co., which op­er­ates the pub, said: “It’s been a stress­ful and emo­tional time for the staff at The Bot­tle of Sauce and we’re pleased with the de­ci­sion and are fo­cused on car­ry­ing on with the fu­ture.

“Our sights are now firmly set on putting this be­hind us and we’re look­ing for­ward to launch­ing our lat­est ad­ven­ture.”

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