Desborough fraudster stole from cleaning firm employers just days after starting new job

She admitted her actions before magistrates

Monday, 3rd May 2021, 10:42 am
Wilkinson stole from her cleaning firm employers.

A Desborough woman stole hundreds of pounds from her employers by transferring cash to her own account - just days after starting a new job there.

Leesa Wilkinson was employed as an accounts assistant at Birchfield Cleaning Services on July 2, 2018, tasked with helping with administration duties in the office.

But on July 12 - and with suspicions about her actions already raised - she paid a £485.28 bill into her own personal account rather than the account of the firm which was expecting the cash.

The 43-year-old later admitted fraud by abuse of position and was handed a community order at Northampton Magistrates' Court on Wednesday (April 28).

The court heard the cleaning firm's managing director became suspicious about Wilkinson's actions after money went missing from the petty cash in the few days she was working there.

Prosecuting, Stella Moses said that ten days after Wilkinson started she came into work and asked if she could pay some bills, but said she had to go home soon after doing so because her daughter was unwell.

The firm's managing director found it suspicious and called in professionals to check the company accounts - revealing her criminal activity.

Ms Moses said: "It was revealed that Wilkinson had made a payment from the company account to her own account of £485.28."

Wilkinson, of Pipewell Road, was later confronted and said she would pay the cash back.

The court heard she said: "I do not know why I did this. I am sorry.

"I do not know what came over me. I have never done this before."

Wilkinson, who was not represented in court, failed to pay the money back and was interviewed by police.

She told them she had no involvement in any petty cash going missing, but did transfer money to her own account because of her own personal family struggles.

Police decided to give her a caution on the condition she paid the cash back by May 2020. She did not pay it back and was then charged.

A victim statement from the firm's managing director said: "This has made me feel very untrusting in the office."

The court heard Wilkinson had a previous conviction under the Fraud Act from 2012.

She told magistrates her actions were out of character.

She added: "I cannot apologise enough to him (the managing director)'s wrong and I know it's wrong."

Wilkinson was sentenced to a 12-month community order with rehabilitation activities.

Chairman of the bench Amanda McMahon told the fraudster she would have to repay the £485.28 she stole in full, at a rate of £25 a week.

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