Charity shop gave woman £90,000 refund in error – now she could face jail
Comfort Konadu, 52, previously received a suspended prison sentence after pleading guilty to theft
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A charity is set to claw back thousands of pounds after £90,000 was transferred to a woman’s account in error at one of its shops.
Comfort Konadu received the ‘unexpected windfall’ in her account, after going to return an item she had purchased from a Royal Mencap Society charity shop in Openshaw.
She didn’t tell anyone about the error and instead made a ‘flurry’ of transactions, transferring £57,000 of the cash out into other accounts including to her children.
The bank were able to freeze some of the money, but the charity, which supports people with learning disabilities, lost more than £31,000.
They will recoup a portion of the losses after a Proceeds of Crime hearing was held at Manchester Crown Court.
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She could face six months in jail if she fails to pay back the sum within three months.MOST READ
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Konadu’s sentencing hearing in September last year heard that Konadu had let ‘temptation’ get the better of her.
The mum-of-six had been to the shop on Friday, October 11, 2019, to obtain a refund.
Senior managers at the charity were alerted to the large refund and launched an investigation.
Staff at the Openshaw store said there had been an ‘issue with the machine’, and £90,047.19 had been transferred to Konadu’s account in error.
Two members of staff were suspended, and they were later dismissed.
The sum landed in Konadu’s account on October 14, after the weekend, when she made the transfers including to an account belonging to her son.
Prosecutors said the £31,000 loss would represent up to 18 months worth of profits for the charity shop.
Konadu’s barrister said ‘temptation got the better of her’, and that she usually lives a ‘modest and humble’ lifestyle working as a cleaner.
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She was sentenced to 20 months in prison, suspended for two years.
“You have brought shame on yourself, and I dare say to your family,” Judge Nicholas Dean QC told her.
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Proceeds of Crime hearing was heard by the same judge on Tuesday.
Prosecuting, James Preece said Konadu, of Mattison Street, Openshaw, was found to have benefited from her crime to the tune of £14,319.38.
An investigation found she had an available amount of £12,761, which the judge ordered her to pay back.
The judge also made an order ensuring the charity gets priority in receiving the funds.
“Today’s hearing concludes the proceedings in this court, in relation to your guilty plea to theft,” the judge told Konadu.
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