Pregnant woman stole £300K from boss to ‘make herself feel better’ while splashing cash on booze, drugs and furniture

A MUM-to-be stole £290,000 from colleagues before squandering it on booze and drugs.

Maisie Passey used her position as a payroll coordinator to siphon cash into her own bank account.

She splashed thousands on booze, drugs, clothes and furniture to "make herself feel better" after being in an unhealthy relationship, the court heard.

Eight-months pregnant Passey, 27, was handed a two-and-a-half year prison sentence.

BirminghamLive reports she was "shocked" to learn how much she had stolen over the course of three years – after her former company reduced their underlying profit which resulted in a loss of bonuses and affected more than 100 workers' tax status.

The 27-year-old from Sutton Coldfield, West Midlands, was found guilty of nicking the cash from Auctus Management by swapping other people's bank details for her own and then submitting fake time sheets.

Prosecutor Andrew Davidson told Birmingham Crown Court: "She was effectively using her position to change bank details of employees to her own, then fabricate and submit time sheets for those employees to cause wages to be paid into her account."

He added: "When asked why she committed it, she said it started when she was in a bad relationship. It wasn't abusive, but it was a bad one.

"She became pregnant and had a termination during that period. She began to spend the money on drugs and as a means to make herself feel better.

"She got into debt with her bank for around £15,000 and also a private loan for £50,000.

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"She was unable to pay the amount and continued to need money for the lifestyle and drugs she had turned to."

Passey is said to have kept her addiction secret from her new boyfriend.

The scam unravelled when a finance manager noticed discrepancies in bank details and raised the alarm.

Passey was hauled into a police interview and admitted guilt.

She mouthed "sorry" to sobbing friends and family as she was jailed, after her barrister had argued she should be spared jail due to her "high risk" pregnancy.

Defending, Benjamin Williams told the court Passey wouldn't receive the same level of medical care in prison.

But Judge Avik Mukherjee told the court: "I've come to the view this offending is so serious I am justified in imposing an immediate term of imprisonment as I exercise my public duty.

"It is both appropriate and proportionate. I have come to the conclusion I can't justifiably impost a non-custodial sentence in this case."

Ben Williams also said that Passey had since sought help for her addiction issues and helped to pay back £30,000 of her debt after becoming embroiled with a loan shark.

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