A bank cashier who stole from her employers before paying the money into her own account at the same branch in Torquay has been jailed.
Jennifer Davies' thieving ways were described as "naive and simple" at Exeter Crown Court, where she was handed a 15-month jail sentence. She pleaded guilty to 13 offences of theft from her branch of Santander, equating to £20,150, during an 18-month period.
The court heard Davies, 25, was "on the lowest tier of staff" at the branch – a cashier with the added responsibility of reconciling money from the ATM deposit box. But she began to siphon off money contained in some customers' deposit envelopes, the court heard, to help pay off her brother's gambling debts.
The rest was used to pay for a Mini Cooper car and a £2,000 holiday, while some was saved. Bank investigators soon identified Davies as the culprit when it was noticed identical or similar sums to those missing from the branch were being placed into Davies' own Santander account. Sentencing a tearful Davies to jail, Recorder David Bartlett said: "I am afraid my view is that people in your position who abuse the trust of their employers for a period in excess of a year and run up a loss to them of more than £20,000 simply have to go to prison and go to prison immediately."
The stunned defendant was led from the dock to begin her sentence.