Devious Folkestone carer Georgina Dowding spared jail after stealing names of vulnerable in bid to get catalogue credit
A callous carer secretly used the names of vulnerable people in an attempt to get credit with catalogue companies.
Devious Georgina Dowding, who also tried to use the identities of her bosses, was suspended pending a police inquiry - but got another job at a second care home.
The 24-year-old then began stealing gold jewellery - including a coin, bracelet and necklace - from patients before selling them at a pawnbroker shop.
But the fraudster has escaped going straight to prison for her breaches of trust... because she is expecting a child.
Dowding, of Thanet Gardens, Folkestone, became pregnant after her crimes had been uncovered.
She was given a six-month jail sentence - suspended for two years - after admitting fraud and theft charges.
Dowding thanked Judge Nigel Van Der Bijl after hearing she will only have to pay £200 costs within six months - and was not ordered to pay compensation to her victims.
Prosecutor Trevor Wright told Canterbury Crown Court how Dowding was a care worker at Magenta Care Home, in St John's Church Road in Folkestone, in August last year.
He said: "That is a care house for vulnerable adults with learning disabilities.
"While she worked there she made a number of applications with catalogue companies, to open a number of accounts in various names."
Mr Wright said two of the names she used were residents at the home and two were similar names to other residents.
"The incident was discovered when one of the residents received a letter from a catalogue company telling him his application had been declined," he said.
"Care home bosses immediately knew something was wrong as the victim started making enquiries.
"The catalogue company then revealed that a number of attempts had been made to open accounts. As a result, search warrants were issued for the home she was staying at."
"I am not going to send you to prison, firstly because of the state you are in - you are pregnant..." - Judge Nigel Van Der Bijl
Detectives then discovered she had used the names of her bosses - financial directors and day care officers.
Dowding told police she had done this because her boyfriend had been given a higher credit rating even though he was on benefits.
Mr Wright added: "She claimed that she had never intended to use the accounts, but was merely curious what other people's credit ratings were."
Dowding was then suspended before landing a job at another residential home for people suffering from dementia, where she stole jewellery from residents and then sold them at a pawnbroker.
Matthew Griffiths, defending, said: "This is a bizarre case. She has been in the care industry for seven years without any suggestion she was capable of doing this. She was in huge debt and unable to service it."
He said Dowding was now pregnant and is expecting her child on Christmas Day.
Judge Van Der Bijl told her: "You now realise how serious these offences are and how close you came to going to prison.
"But I am not going to send you to prison, firstly because of the state you are in - you are pregnant."
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