December 13 2013 Latest news:
Saturday, September 14, 2013
A former technician for a Norfolk car manufacturer has been sentenced to 12 months in prison after pleading guilty to stealing more than £78,000 of parts from his employer and selling them on ebay.
Karl Fisher, of Patrick Road, Long Stratton, appeared at Norwich Crown Court yesterday to be sentenced after previously admitting theft from his former employer, Lotus Cars, at Hethel.
The court heard Fisher, who had worked at the factory for 24 years, made £50,000 as a result of the offence, which took place between October 2010 and August 2012.
Richard White, prosecuting, said Fisher was in a position of trust at the company and admitted that he believed his long service would put him above the suspicion of his employers.
During his time at Lotus Cars, Fisher was involved in the crash-testing process, which meant parts of cars were no longer able to be used. Once these items had been disposed of, Fisher would take them to his car and from his home would sell them from a personal ebay account.
Fisher stole parts with a total value of £78,977.08p and made £50,000 profit from ebay sales. He was eventually caught out after the company received an anonymous tip-off.
When first questioned by police about his motives, he said he began stealing for revenge.
Mr White said: “He began stealing because his son had been made redundant by the company and this was a way of getting back at them and getting revenge.”
But Jonathan Goodman, defending, said this was a lie born out of embarrassment of the financial situation he had gotten his family into.
“He originally said to the police that his motive was revenge, but this was fictional, made-up out of embarrassment and shame,” he said.
“Even at that stage he did not want to reveal the financial mess he got himself into.
“He made a hash of his own finances.”
Mr Goodman added that with the help of his in-laws, Fisher had been able to compensate Lotus cars for the full amount.
Sentencing Fisher to a total of 12 months imprisonment for theft, Recorder Jonathan Seely said: “You are of positive and good character and you have no previous convictions. It is unusual in a case like this that you are in a position to repay the money.
“But this offending, I’m afraid, is too serious.”