Hard-up mum stole from employer

IPSWICH: A mother-of-one stuck in the poverty trap admitted stealing more than �100 from her former employers, a court has heard.

IPSWICH: A mother-of-one stuck in the poverty trap admitted stealing more than �100 from her former employers, a court has heard.

Laura Nicholls, of Geneva Road, stole �120 from a weekend's takings in a “moment of madness” due to the pressure of rising bills and a low income.

The 36-year-old pleaded guilty to theft at South East Suffolk Magistrates' Court, admitting stealing the money from the Subway sandwich shop in Queen Street on Monday, October 19.

The shop manager had been counting the takings, which totalled �2,300, shortly before the incident when he left the money on his desk for around 20 minutes.


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When he went to pay the takings into the bank and the money was counted by the cashier the takings were found to be �120 short of the total.

Returning to the office he checked the store's CCTV footage which revealed Nicholls as the only person to enter the office while the money was on his desk.

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After calling the police the money was recovered from a bush at the back of the property.

Ian Duckworth, mitigating, said the theft was an impulsive action. He said Nicholls had panicked as soon as she left the office and had been intending to return the money but by that time her manager had retuned from the bank.

Mr Duckworth said: “She felt embarrassed and ashamed. It was a moment of madness. She has been caught in the poverty trap and she succumbed to temptation.”

A report ordered by magistrates stated Nicholls has since made contact with her manager to apologise for the theft and was not sacked from her position but chose to leave of her own accord.

The report said: “She feels responsible for the offence. She was in a significant amount of debt she wanted to try and clear.

“She realised immediately she had done wrong and went to take it back.”

Chairman of the bench John Clements sentenced Nicholls to a six-month supervision order and ordered her to pay �35 costs.

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