Daughter jailed for raiding bank account of her elderly mother instead of paying top-up for care home fees
PUBLISHED: 16:44 02 February 2018 | UPDATED: 14:32 03 February 2018
A daughter raided the bank account of her vulnerable elderly mother stealing more than £22,000 rather than pay top-up fees needed for her care, a court heard.
Katrina Gilbert, 40, was trusted to look after her mother’s finances but instead stole cash meant to pay for the care homes in the Norwich area, where her mother was living and blew the cash herself, Norwich Crown Court heard.
Lori Tucker, prosecuting, said: “She was raiding her mother’s bank account and using it for her own purpose.”
She said the mother, who suffers from some short-term memory loss, was left without any allowances to pay for extras at the home, such as daily newspapers.
However when the thefts came to light, Ms Tucker said the mother forgave her daughter: “Mother still loves her daughter and she still wants to see her daughter, although it has been distressing.”
Gilbert of Thorpe Road, Haddiscoe, admitted theft of £22,731 between July 2013 and November 2016.
Jailing her for 10 months, Recorder Guy Ayers told her: ”The person you stole from was your mother who was in a care home. She trusted you to organise her finances, in particular to make certain she continued to have a roof over her head, to pay the bills at the care home and have the allowances to give her the little extras in life. Instead of doing that, you tried to syphon off money for your own purposes. This went on for a long period of time.”
He said it was small amounts of cash but taken over a long period of time: “This was a high level breach of trust.”
Recorder Ayers said her case should send out a warning: “People who are in care homes and are vulnerable must be protected by the courts.”
Jonathan Goodman, for Gilbert, said that she had not set out to steal cash: “She did not set out with a plan to steal money from her mother.”
He said some cash had been used to buy extras for her mother but it got out of hand: “She let her mother down and paid a heavy price.”