A former Volkswagen salesman has been handed an 18-month suspended prison sentence after diverting almost £4,000 of customers’ cash into his own bank account.
Cardiff Crown Court heard how 40-year-old Christopher Wilkins, of Pen-y-Bryn in Caerphilly, admitted four counts of theft by employee after he stole the cash in a bid to overcome “very substantial financial difficulties.”
Wilkins was an employee of Sinclair Volkswagen on East Tyndall Street, Cardiff, when the offences took place in 2015, Wales Online reported.
Prosecutor Julian Greenwood said that £2,620 in cash was diverted into Wilkins’ account following the sale of a van before the defendant claimed that he had taken the money home by mistake and lost it.
On another occasion he paid £341.56 into his own bank account, which was an overpayment from a client.
He also took two £500 deposit payments from clients, which should have been refunded.
Greenwood said that the “irregularities were noticed at the end of that year”, adding that Wilkins was dismissed from the company in December 2015.
A total of £3,961.56 had been taken, but Sinclair withheld his final pay check of £1,267.91.
Rhodri Chudleigh, mitigating on behalf of the defendant, who had no previous convictions, said that the father-of-three has since expressed remorse.
Judge Neil Bidder handed Wilkins a 27-week jail term, suspended for 18 months ordered him to complete 15 days of a rehabilitation activity and issued a curfew.
Wilkins was also ordered to pay £2694.35 in compensation.