Recruitment worker steals thousands from clients

Recruitment worker steals thousands from clients

An employee at a recruitment consultancy has been diverting thousands of pounds by stealing holiday pay from clients, a court has heard.

Leanna Draper, an employee at First Choice recruitment in Middlesbrough, seemingly swindled over £4,000 from contract workers by claiming their annual leave pay. Jobseekers who used the agency to find work were entitled to half a day of holiday every week, however, since many of the clients were on short-term contracts, they never took their entitled pay.

Draper then funnelled the money they were owed into six different accounts that were all linked back to her, Teesside Magistrates’ Court heard.

The Gazette Live reported that 52 transactions had accumulated a total of £4,032 for Draper during May and June of this year, whilst she worked in the firm’s accounting department. Prosecutor Lynne Dalton told the court: “She seemed to be targeting people who had worked for a very short period of time, and might not know about it.

“But the company are the sole victims of this, and the holiday pay is available for each client should they claim it.”

The case has been passed on to Teesside Crown Court after it was revealed that Draper has a previous conviction of a 12-month suspended sentence in 2010 for money laundering. Draper also admitted that she had not told First Choice recruitment about her criminal past, as she believed it would have hampered her chances of landing the role.

Brett Wildridge, mitigating, explained to the court that Draper had been on a methadone reduction programme to help combat her drug abuse. However, The Gazette Live reported that she turned to criminal activity due to recent financial difficulty.

The trial continues. 

And it seems that this is not the only case of criminal activity to hit the headlines recently. Earlier this month, Recruitment Grapevine reported on a raid at a staffing agency, whereby six people were arrested under suspicion of fraud. 

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