Dagenham security guard who pocketed drunk passenger’s wallet while helping buy tickets has been sentenced
PUBLISHED: 15:43 21 September 2017 | UPDATED: 15:58 21 September 2017
A “dishonest” security guard who pocketed a drunk passenger’s wallet and defrauded him of hundreds of pounds has been sacked and ordered to repay her victim and do community service.
The inebriated passenger had entrusted his wallet and pin to the Ockendon c2c guard, asking if she would help him navigate the ticket machine and buy a ticket on March 6.
Helen Adu, 50, of Church Elm Lane, Dagenham, obliged - but she didn’t give back his wallet and bank cards.
The 44-year-old passenger didn’t realise his wallet has disappeared until much later into his journey.
The following morning he reported his wallet missing and cancelled his bank cards - but not before Adu had gone on a £640 spending spree.
She was caught on CCTV locking up her office, going to a cash machine and withdrawing money. She also took the opportunity to top up her own Oyster card.
Adu was arrested a few weeks later and was caught trying to stuff a receipt down the back of the police car’s seat.
Investigating officer, PC Matt Hooper, said: “This was a long and very time-consuming investigation. Adu was shown to be extremely dishonest and abused her position of authority and trust by preying on the intoxicated victim who looked to her for help.
“The fact Adu maintained her innocence even when faced with overwhelming evidence shows the dishonest nature of the defendant by not facing up to her actions.
“No person travelling on the railway should expect to have items stolen from them, least of all from a member of security staff who is there to ensure customer safety.”
She pleaded guilty to five counts of fraud and one count of theft.
She was sentenced at Basildon Magistrates’ Court on August 31 and given a community order of 150 hours unpaid work and rehabilitation activity for 20 days.
Her victim has recouped the money stolen from him, plus a surcharge. She was also forced to cover his £170 court costs.
A c2c spokeswoman said: “This individual, who worked for a security agency we no longer use, was removed from duties with c2c following their arrest.
“We provided the police with full support and assistance during their investigation including CCTV footage.”