Barking mum jailed for stealing charity boxes

Jail term: Mum-of-four Elana Stoian was sentenced to four months on Friday

Jail term: Mum-of-four Elana Stoian was sentenced to four months on Friday - Credit: Archant

A charity box thief who took donations from beauty salons in a “mean-spirited” crime spree across the Home Counties has been jailed.

Pregnant mum Elana Stoian, 23, of Somerby Road, Barking, denied conspiracy to steal but was found guilty at Maidstone Crown Court on Friday.

Sentencing her to four months, Judge David Griffith-Jones QC told her: “You frequently stole charity boxes and by doing so diverted sums contributed by well-meaning members of the public to a variety of good causes.

“In doing so you deprived those causes of much-needed funds by the mean-spirited actions you used to line your own pockets.”

The court heard that Stoian was part of a “professional gang” who had targeted hairdressers and beauty salons in the Home Counties and towns in Kent including Southborough, Tunbridge Wells, Pembury and Sevenoaks.

Stoian had been an “active and willing participant” who drove around Kent as part of a criminal enterprise to steal mobile phones and charity boxes, the court was told.

The Romanian-born mother-of-four was put on a curfew after being found guilty of conspiracy to steal at the crown court in August last year.

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Judge Griffith-Jones added: “There is little in the way of mitigation. You remain in denial and have shown no remorse. A prison sentence is required. Nothing else will do.”

Because she is likely to serve half her sentence and the time she has been on the curfew she could be freed in the near future.