Wednesday 28 February 2024
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Nottingham

Fraudster jailed after stealing elderly woman’s £18,500 life savings and ‘frittering it away’

A cruel fraudster who stole and frittered away an elderly and vulnerable woman’s life savings has been jailed.

Martin Sibcy, aged 54, had been entrusted with the 80-year-old’s personal finances but abused that trust for his own personal gain.

His offending, which included making luxury purchases like a motorcycle, was discovered when the victim’s savings had been so depleted that direct debits paying for her residential care failed.

Detective Constable Dan Weaver, a specialist fraud investigator with Nottinghamshire Police’s economic and cyber crime unit, said: “This was a despicable crime in which Sibcy took advantage of a very vulnerable person and stole a significant amount of money.

“He completely emptied her bank account, which meant she was unable to pay her care fees.

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“He did so for his own personal gain, including treating himself to luxury items.”

Sibcy, of Wood Street, Newark, was jailed for 15 months at Nottingham Crown Court on July 13, 2022 after admitting theft.

He made purchases totalling more than £3,000 from shops and to pay for mobile phone bills, car insurance and broadband over the course of nine months.

During the same period, from December 2019 to September 2020, Sibcy made 66 cash withdrawals totalling more than £15,000.

Most of the cash was withdrawn close to his home, but in August 2020 he used the bank card in Skegness, Lincolnshire, having travelled there on a day trip using a motorcycle he had bought and insured with the victim’s money.

During police interviews, Sibcy claimed to have only borrowed the money but the victim was unaware and had not got given her permission.

There was also no evidence he had repaid any of the money and he had kept no records to show how much he had taken.

Sibcy claimed the bank card he used must have been cloned, but investigations proved this was not the case and he was the only person with access to it.

The total amount stolen was £18,403.60 and Nottinghamshire Police will now look to use the Proceeds of Crime Act to recover funds to compensate the victim.

DC Weaver added: “I hope this conviction and sentence sends a message to deter others who may commit such offences in the belief they can escape justice.”

“It shows Nottinghamshire Police takes reports of fraud and financial abuse by people who hold a position of trust extremely seriously.”

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