Financial officer stole £132,000 to feed gambling habit

Employer’s first knowledge of the theft was when the bailiff’s were beating on the door

A 29-year-old financial manager for a Derby, UK firm specializing in IT managed to steal GBP 132 000 to feed an online gambling compulsion without his employers realising it for two years.

The Derby Crown Court heard this week that Scott Joy wrote himself cheques and paid money into his account from Node4 Ltd in Derby, where he was in charge of finances.

The court heard that the first intimation that his employers had that something was amiss was when bailiffs called regarding unpaid bills. They were not the only ones – Joy’s wife was also kept completely in the dark about his internet gambling activities.

Joy’s legal representative said that on one occasion his client had replaced GBP 4 000 when luck had been in his favour. "He was looking for the bigger win to pay it all back but that never happened," the lawyer said. "He was given too much responsibility at too young an age.”

"He was given control of the finances and given the password to enable him to do what he wanted to do."

Prosecutors said that the company initiated a private investigation on discovering that corporate bills had not been paid. The police were subsequently called in and charges laid.

Joy pleaded guilty and was sentenced to 16 months in jail by Recorder Shaun Smith QC, who said: "Nobody who steals that amount of money can avoid going to custody, especially when it is in breach of trust.

"I accept that you are a decent man but you have a side to you which unfortunately manifested itself in this offence. And that side was your gambling.

"It has led to you committing very serious offences."

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