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David Allerton in court for stealing from Spar shop and Blades cafe
THE manager of a shop and cafe at RAF Odiham stole thousands of pounds to pay off debts and fund his alcohol addiction.
David Allerton stole £17,365 during an 18-month period when he was in charge of the Spar shop and Blades café.
He was found out when his employer, Aramark Catering, conducted an audit and internal investigation.
Allerton, 32, was in the dock at Winchester Crown Court for sentence, having previously pleaded guilty to one count of theft and one count of possession of cannabis by magistrates.
Matthew Jewell, prosecuting, said the theft was “extremely straightforward” and was discovered by his company when they carried out the audit on June 25 last year.
He said: “It appears that what has happened is that although the money each week was correctly recorded and accounted for, there were increasing delays in the money being taken to the bank and deposited.
“This built up a buffer which allowed for money to be taken and deposited back in the bank later.”
Mr Jewell said Allerton was the only person with access to the safes in the café and the shop, and made full admissions to the company when it conducted its internal investigation.
He added that Allerton had significant debts, including £21,000 owed to two banks, and had taken out a £3,500 loan to replace the money taken from work.
But the court heard Allerton, who now lives in Kings Lynn, Norfolk, also spent the cash on a “fairly expensive watch” and a suit. When he was arrested, he was found with a small amount of cannabis.
Stuart Western, defending, said Allerton was isolated in Odiham, away from his native Norfolk, and struggled with debt and drinking.
Judge Guy Boney sentenced him to eight months imprisonment, suspended for 18 months, with 250 hours unpaid work and a £100 victim surcharge. There was no separate penalty for the cannabis offence.
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