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I have committed fraud at work, which I have admitted! I worked at Iceland foods head office in deeside, as a admin assistant. they where going to suspend me on full pay until they completed there investigations. But I confessed and handed in my notice as I would eventually to dismissed, so I thought it best to hand my notice in so I didn't have gross misconduct on my record. They have advised they will contact the police. They say that I have taken amount of £9000.00 I really didn't think it was that much. Basically I was in charge of Iceland's Star Performer scheme which was when a employee did a good job they would win a scratch card and a from £10 - £150, they would input this into internal system. I would run the data and export all prizes into a spreadsheet, which got sent to a company called park who would top up a love2shop card. I basically did fraudulent claims and topped up the cards. I used the money for food, shopping cloths etc. I know what I have down is wrong and I have wrecked my life. I have a two year old daughter, I am currently in financial difficulty by I nearly got my house repossessed few month's ago. I know its no excuse but they advise they will be contacting the police! I'm so scared that I will go to prison, what will happen to my daughter x I don't have much family, also what happens if people fine out I haven't told anyone as I am so ashamed of what I have done. I have been done citizens advise and applied for income support until I can find employment again. I've written a letter of apologise to the company for what I have done, I know it wont help me.
Hello I am a solicitor with 20 years experience. I will try to help you with this. What is is it you would like to know?
If you are hoping to avoid prosecution you should contact Iceland again and make an offer of repayment. You will probably not be able to afford this but is there anyone anywhere who could lend you the money?
No there isn't anyone I can ask what would be a reasonable amount?
who do I contact?
if they did contact the police as they said they would what would happen aswell ive got a daughter on my own, Im scared of them coming to arrest me, I have never been arrested in my life. I would need to arrange a friend to look after her
Laos they have only paid me half my wages which is just enough to cover my mortgage and ill get tax credits for the next four weeks which will cover shopping, gas and electric.
Will the police search my property?
I would suggest you old boss/manager/whoever told you they were going to report it to the police. You should offer as much as you can and if that is not the full amount then you should offer a regular payment of as much as you can afford.
I have ben in contact with the HR Manager shall I contact her and offer this? It was the investigation manager whio advised they will contact the police if they did what would happen?
If they contacted the police then the police will probably telephone you to arrange for you to come in to to surrender for an interview. Most police forces would arrest you for that to take place but it is arguable that if you are coming in voluntarily for interview that they do not need to arrest you. I doubt that they would have any justification fro searching your property.
Ok I hope so, if Iceland do prosecute me what punish would I be looking at? Would I lose my daughter?
If they what do I need to do to help my case? also I worried that this will be put in the papers and everyone will find out?
sorry I ment punishment
Would you send a letter in the post or a email?
I have never been in trouble before, Also I'm looking for another job Im worried this will affect that
The courts take this sort of offending seriously. There is a risk that you could be sent to prison for this. The fact that you have a young child and (I assume) this is your first offence and that you admitted the offending very early will all help reduce the seriousness of the offence. In addition to this ui need to demonstrate remorse and your sense of shame. You have already done this by making admissions and paying money back will also help. Another thing that will help is if you get another job before getting to court. A remorseful mother with a dependent child who has got a job is the sort of person mist courts are reluctant to send to prison.
You must get a solicitor of you hear from the police. They will help make the whole process much less intimidating and will make sure that nothing goes wrong.
As to which of those to contact you know them both so are in a better position to judge.
Yes this is my first offence I will contact them straight away offer a payment, and advise that I will pay more once I am working again. That should be a problem I will work as anything.
Shall I try and find a solicitor now or use the duty one at the police station
I am currently taking anti depressants from when my house was nearly repossessed as I could sleep and was getting anxious Ive made another doctors appointment as I was due to wean of them but I think they may help.
As to sentence the sentencing guidelines would indicate that if you were found guilty after trial the starting point for the sentencing court would be a prison sentence of 18 weeks (of which not more than 9 would be served in prison). You will need to have a report from the probation service before sentencing as your case will b on the borderline of a community punishment and prison sentence. If I were representing you in court I would think it likely that you would receive either a lengthy period of community service or a suspended prison sentence + community order (ie you would not go to prison as long as you kept out of trouble for specified period and did your community punsihment properly).
Ie there is a real risk of a short prison sentence but in most cases like yours the Defendant does not go to prison.
All these answers are assuming you are guilty and it is obviously provable that you are.
I am so worried fro my daughter she is only two, as if I go to prison what will happen to our home etc I would never get again and what family I have and friends will disown me. Yes I am guilty I've made the worse mistake ever
It might well be a good idea to contact a solicitor now. Duty solicitors are usually good but if you are going to surrender voluntarily it may all go more smoothly if you attend with your own solicitor at an arranged time. You will not have to pay for a solicitor as non-means tested legal aid will cover attendance at the interview. Your solicitor will need to know about you mental health problems as will the probation service,
Is the child's father involved in you and your daughter's life?
Will my mental health go against me. As I was worried when I went on them that they would rule that I was a unfit mother and take her away
Yes the father is a big part of her life. To be fair he is good father, I got pregnant early in the relationship and decided to kepp the child due to past mis carriages as I was scared I would never have a chance again. We are friends and have a good relationship
If I did go to prison I would be happy for her to go into his care
Your mental health problems if handled correctly will help you at your sentencing. The presence of a supportive father is also helpful, I take it you are not together. He would probably have to look after your daughter if ( and I do not think you will) you went to jail. You would not necessarilly lose your home in the if you went inside, HB would probably continue to be paid while you were away.
Is there anything else I can do to help my case?
Be remorseful, pay back as much as you can, get a job, get a solicitor. That is about it.
No we aren't together he cheated on me not long after I found I was pregnant but I decided for the babies best interest to let him have as much involved as he wished.
How long do these case's take? also how can I keep this away from the media? I know there are rumours around work, Ive kept in contact with one close friend the rest Ive cut contact i.e blocked off facebook
sorry for all the questions, Im not entitled to housing benefit just council tax reduction and income support. not housing benefit x so I will get a job asap as to be fair I don't want to be on income support.
It will probably take a while. It is a bit like saying a how long is a piece of string but I dealt with similar case where the sentencing took place about 9 months after the workplace investigation. As far as media is concerned there is nothing you can really do about rumours on facebook and twitter. The court case is a public hearing and the press could report it but I doubt your case is of much interest to anyone but you.
Is there anything else I can help you with?
no I think that's it thank you for all you help at least I have some idea of what to do x
OK well good luck. I would be grateful if you would rate my answers as I will not get paid for answering your questions if you do not do so.