Postmistress Jailed for £43K Fraud- CONVICTION NOW QUASHED

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Biker Mouse
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Postmistress Jailed for £43K Fraud- CONVICTION NOW QUASHED

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A 45-year-old Shropshire subpostmistress who admitted concealing the theft of more than £40,000 from a county post office has been jailed for 12 months.

Rubbina Shaheen, of Wood Street, Shrewsbury, would have faced longer in prison had it not been for the “exceptional” references received from the local community, Shrewsbury Crown Court heard yesterday.

Shaheen previously admitted, on the day of a planned trial, fraud between February 1, 2008, and September 3, 2009.

She dishonestly made false representations on a Horizon final balances account for Greenfields Post Office, namely that the amount of cash in hand was greater than the true figure.

Mr Jonathan Woodcock, for Shaheen, said she admitted the charge on the basis “she was aware monies had been abstracted and proceeded to conceal those facts” but he said “she did not steal those monies”.

Judge Robin Onions told Shaheen and members of the community of Greenfields, who had turned out to support her, that they must understand her crime was one of dishonesty while she was in a position of trust.

Mr John Oates, prosecuting, said: “Rubbina Shaheen was appointed to be the sub-postmistress at Greenfields Post Office in Shrewsbury on August 24, 2006.

“On September 3, 2009, a Post Office auditor went to the premises to carry out an investigation and audit of the accounts. She did a preliminary investigation and from that believed there was a shortage of money.

“She then carried out a full check in the presence of the defendant and immediately found there was a very substantial shortage and asked Mrs Shaheen for an explanation.

“The defendant said straight away she had been covering up a shortage of cash but said the reason for it was that there was something wrong with the Post Office computer.

“The total missing was £43,269.10.”

Mr Woodcock said: “Good people sometimes make mistakes.”

But Judge Onions told Shaheen: “You knew that money was going missing and you did nothing about it. You dishonestly concealed what was going on.

“We are still no wiser as to where this money has gone"

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Lounge Lizard
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Re: Postmistress Jailed for £43K Fraud

Post by Lounge Lizard »

"The total missing was £43,269.10.” :shock:

Mr Woodcock said: “Good people sometimes make mistakes.” :crazy:
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Re: Postmistress Jailed for £43K Fraud

Post by chelseachris »

Don"t steal from the government because they don"t like competition :Applause
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Re: Postmistress Jailed for £43K Fraud

Post by DGP1 »

Lounge Lizard wrote:"The total missing was £43,269.10.” :shock:

Mr Woodcock said: “Good people sometimes make mistakes.” :crazy:
Is this not a problem with the computer system? Maybe our subbies could comment.
I'm preparing myself for the zombie invasion, rule number 1 - Cardio
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Re: Postmistress Jailed for £43K Fraud

Post by SamW »

This sort of occurence seems only too common now. Having heard about the national 'Horizon Online' system upgrade, are these problems still occuring even after the system has apparently been upgraded?
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Re: Postmistress Jailed for £43K Fraud

Post by subbie »

Well I for one believe that the old version could go wrong, (and have the evidence) and I know the new one is riddled with glitches.

What I would like to know is what experiences do Crown Office users have of Horizon going wrong, or is it only in Sub Offices where problems occur?

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Re: Postmistress Jailed for £43K Fraud

Post by TrueBlueTerrier »

Wrongly jailed ex-post office staff are awarded £100,000 compensation

Three former post office workers from the West Midlands who were wrongly jailed because of glitches with a computer system are to receive up to £100,000 each as interim compensation.

Postal affairs minister Paul Scully has announced he would be setting up an interim payments fund to compensate 57 former post office staff – mainly sub-postmasters – who were wrongly convicted because of a fault with the Post Office computer database.

The news has been welcomed by Rubbina Shaheen, from Shrewsbury, and Tracy Felstead, from Telford, who both had their convictions overturned in April. Former Staffordshire postmaster Carl Page, whose conviction was overturned at the same time, will also be eligible.

Miss Felstead, who was a 19-year-old counter clerk when she was jailed in 2001, said £100,000 would not be enough to compensate her for the past 20 years, but said she was very glad the Government was making an interim payment.

"I'm a bit shocked, I'm very happy," said Miss Felstead, now 39, who twice tried to kill herself after her conviction.

"I wouldn't say it's enough to be a full and final settlement, it's just an interim payment. But I'm glad the Government has decided to do something to help."

Miss Felstead, who lives in Bournside Drive, Brookside, spent six months in Holloway Prison after being convicted of stealing £11,500.

In May she received a personal apology from Prime Minister Boris Johnson for the hardship her conviction had caused.

Mrs Shaheen, who was sub-postmistress at Greenfields Post Office in Shrewsbury before she was jailed in 2010, also welcomed the news.

"It's very good news, we're delighted," she said.

But her husband Mohamed also said the money was not enough.

He said the couple had lost their business and their home as a result of the conviction, and at one point were living in the back of a van and having to wash in the toilets at Tesco.

"We have now got to make an application, and we will see how much we get," he said.

"£100,000 sounds a lot of money, but to us it's just a drop in the ocean."

Mrs Shaheen, now 55, was jailed for 12 months in December 2010 for false accounting after the Horizon computer system generated a £40,000 shortfall in the post office accounts.

Mr Page, 54, who kept the Anson Road post office in Rugeley, was jailed for two years in 2007 for allegedly stealing £94,000.

Ministers said the move will ensure that those affected are not left out of pocket as they and the Post Office work toward full settlements for the “immense hardship” they have faced.

The Post Office is now contacting postmasters and will aim to make an offer for an interim payment within 28 days of receiving an application from those whose overturned convictions relied on Horizon evidence.

Mr Scully said: “The suffering and distress these postmasters and their families have gone through cannot be overstated.

“While nothing will make up for the years of pain they faced after this appalling injustice, I hope this initial step provides a measure of comfort.

“The Post Office has started to turn a corner in terms of dealing with its past mistakes – and this Government will support them in doing so wherever possible.”

Post Office chief executive, Nick Read, said: “Ensuring compensation is made as quickly as possible is a priority for Post Office.

"I welcome the Government’s support to enable these interim payments that begin to provide some redress to people who were badly failed.

“Whilst we cannot change the past, this is an important step towards meaningful compensation for victims and we will offer payments as soon as possible.”
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