A bookkeeper who defrauded her employer out of more than £20,000 has been given a suspended prison sentence.
Wendy Horrocks 36, of Dukinfield, was sentenced to 12 months in prison, suspended for two years on Thursday 5 January. The sentencing took place at Manchester Crown Court, Minshull Street.
At an earlier hearing, she pleaded guilty to defrauding Headsets 4 Business between 20 February 2014 and 16 February 2016.
Horrocks worked as a bookkeeper for the company, based in Ashton Under Lyne, between April 2012 and February 2016.
She had access to the firm’s PayPal account as part of her responsibilities.
When Horrocks left the company in February 2016, a new bookkeeper was appointed. It was after she left that a number of unauthorised transfers were discovered, when the PayPal accounts were reviewed.
Horrocks had been diverting funds between November 2013 and February 2016.
Instead of transferring money from the company PayPal account to the main company account, she transferred it to personal accounts.
She then spent the company money as if it were her own. Some was spent on living expenses, a Michael Kors watch and handbags, and Ralph Lauren clothing.
The total loss to the company amounted to £22,502.
In addition to the suspended prison sentence, Horrocks was given a rehabilitation order and must pay an £85 victim surcharge.
A Proceeds of Crime Act hearing has been set for 27 April 2017 to determine a timetable for when the stolen money must be paid back.
Detective Constable Laura Watson, of GMP’s Fraud Investigation Team, said: “For two-and-a-half years Horrocks systematically abused a position that came with a high level of responsibility.
“Her crimes amounted to serious financial losses to the very company which paid her wages and placed a large amount of trust in her.
“Her sentence shows how robustly the courts deal with fraud and should send a firm message to anyone who thinks they can get away with it”.