Fraudster falsely gained £908.67

By Beth Sharp Wednesday 05 February 2014 Updated: 05/02 23:30

AN MAN pleaded guilty to six counts of fraud at Redditch Magistrates Court on Monday (February 3).

Mark John Hughes, 24, of Elmside, appeared after falsely gaining £908.67 for himself.

The prosecution told the court between December 11 2012 and January 4 2013 Hughes obtained goods, valuing £194.24, for himself from Travis Perkins in Bromsgrove by false representation.

The court heard how, on February 11 2013 at Bretforton, Hughes took a blank cheque from his employer's office, and made it out to himself to gain £400.

The prosecution said Hughes then used the details from a business account credit card, belonging to his employer, without authorisation, to gain £159.43 worth of goods from Jacamo in Alvechurch on April 12 2013.

Days later, on April 26, Hughes returned to Jacamo to obtain goods worth £90 for himself.

He then used the same details to obtain a MoT certificate, costing £45, from Baldwins in Bromsgrove and a tyre, valuing £20, from Jefferies in Bromsgrove on April 29 2013.

The court was told Hughes had memorised the details on the card because he had used them many times before when purchasing items on behalf of his employer.

The defence said on the one occasion when Hughes picked up his car, after the MoT, he tried to pay for it with his own card but it was declined.

He added Hughes tried to call his mother for help but could not get through so panicked and used the business account card details.

Hughes' defence said during the time the offences were committed he was having personal and financial problems.

He added Hughes had recently spent eight weeks in prison for another offence and, since coming out, had became a reformed character committed to being a law-abiding citizen.

The defence said Hughes had turned over a new leaf, was in a steady relationship with someone he had recently had a daughter with and had received a job offer.

The bench said it had taken Hughes' current circumstance into consideration deciding the sentence.

He was handed a 12-month community order with a supervision requirement, given 250 hours of unpaid work and was ordered to pay a £60 victim surcharge and £908.67 in compensation.

The magistrates said Hughes had narrowly avoided a custodial sentence and advised him not commit any further offences in the next 12 months or he would face jail.

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