Fraudster slipped up by buying tools in name of real customer

A HAPLESS fraudster bought tools in an attempt to claw back cash he claimed his former boss owed him - but charged them to someone else.

Saturday, 24th January 2015, 7:00 am
Court News

Kris Hunter ordered and sold on £784 worth of kit from a tool firm thinking it would be charged to the business.

But he gave a random false name - which happened to be the same as another customer - who was left with the bill instead of his former boss.

Paula Sanderson, prosecuting at Peterlee Magistrates’ Court, said: “He was owed £1,000 in wages after he left the company.

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“He was aware it had an account. He used a fictitious name to order tools and kit and signed for them in the name of that man.

“He then put them on Gumtree and sold them to an unknown man for £400 and the proceeds of the sale were used to pay his bills.

“He has said he regrets his actions.”

Hunter, 27, of Wear Terrace, Peterlee, admitted fraud by false representation.

Dave Smith, mitigating, said Hunter had made full admissions in interviews with police and was seen on the tool firm’s CCTV system.

He also detailed how the false name of John Watson he came up with belonged to a real customer of the tool firm who had been charged for the ordered gear, not his boss - who also his landlord.

“He has reflected on what he has done and that it was wrong and is genuinely remorseful,” he said.

He went on to say the money made from the sale of the tools was spent on repairs and improvements to the property he was renting.

He added: “That house has now been sold and no doubt the value of it has been increased, as effectively the injured party, not Mr Hunter, has benefitted.”

The court heard how dad-of-two Hunter carries out handyman work for a care home where his mother works.

The magistrates ordered Hunter to pay £784 compensation to Mr Watson and given a nine-month conditional discharge.

He was also ordered to pay £85 in court costs, a £15 victim surcharge.