Daughter fraudulently took almost £41,000 from her mother’s bank account

Marigold Close. Picture: Google Streetview

Marigold Close. Picture: Google Streetview - Credit: Google Streetview

A daughter took almost £41,000 from her vulnerable elderly mother after accessing her account “like a piggy bank”, a court heard.

Sarah Haines, 53, was given control over the bank account of her mother, who is in her 80s and has dementia, after she went into a care home, Norwich Crown Court was told on Monday.

John Morgans, prosecuting, said Haines used the money to go on holidays, meals out as well beauty treatments, as well as buying electrical equipment and using cash towards the running costs of her car.

Mr Morgan said the thefts totalling £40,902 meant that her mother had to switch care homes, to one which was cheaper,

However when confronted about the missing cash, the court heard that Haines admitted what she had done and has since repaid all the money back.

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Haines, of Marigold Close, Horsford, near Norwich, admitted fraud between January 2016 and September 2019.

Recorder Douglas Edwards imposed a 16 month jail sentence suspended for two years and a six month curfew.

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He told her: “You used your mother’s account like a piggy bank taking from it as and when you wanted.”

He said that it had been an abuse of trust and said her thefts meant her mother had to change care homes, although fortunately it had all worked out.

He said: “I have no doubt at all that move must have been unsettling experience for a vulnerable and frail elderly woman. Happily she seems to have settled well.”

Recorder Edwards accepted Haines had shown genuine remorse and repaid all the money.

Andrew Thompson, for Haines, said that she had cashed in her savings to repay all the cash.

He said as a result of her conviction she had lost her good name and her job of 35 years, “Clearly that is a huge knock for her.”

Mr Thompson said she had a number of health problems and depression and said that her brother had not wanted her prosecuted and said he thought his mother would have also not have wanted to see her daughter taken through the courts.

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