Bingo Addiction Drives Woman to Steal from Employer

Bingo Addiction Drives Woman to Steal from Employer

Written by: Glo Wood on 02/11/2013 17:25

Denise Duffin, 47, stole £4,500 from ScotchFrost Ltd employers between January and November 2011 to fund her online bingo addiction.

The Lincoln Magistrates' Court heard of the details on 25 October. Duffin was an employee in the accounts department of the frozen food distributor's Lincoln depot where she accepted payments collected from delivery drivers. It was her duty to handle invoicing and reconciliation of the payments.

"In interview she admitted she was addicted to playing online bingo," said Deborah Cartwright, prosecuting.
"She had got large debts and had fallen into arrears with her mortgage and failed to pay household bills.
"She said she was effectively borrowing from the company.

"It was only when a complaint came from a customer that they had been invoiced for deliveries they said had been paid it came to light.

"A manager carried out an internal audit and discovered there was money missing.

"She claimed there must be a problem with the company's computers."

In mitigation, Bill Miller said, "She allowed herself to become addicted to online bingo and that is the only reason for her being in this situation.

"She has family responsibilities and the effect this has had on this lady since 2011 means you will not see her before the courts again."

Duffin was sentenced to eight weeks in jail suspended for nine months after she admitted to the theft. She will also be required to pay £2,000 to the company that has since closed its Lincoln location.

Chris Shepherd, chairman of the bench, said: "This is a serious offence of theft in breach of trust. However you did plead guilty at the earliest opportunity."

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