Betting shop scam thief jailed for two years after admitting taking £2,500

Court news.
Court news.

A betting shop worker faked a robbery with her St Leonards boyfriend to grab £2,500 from bookmakers a court heard today.

Paulina Chrzanowska, 27, worked in the Mare Street branch of Paddy Power in Hackney and had the job of delivering the takings to the post office.

CCTV footage showed Chrzanowska and Hayden Noel, 31, of Kenilworth Road, arriving at the betting shop together on December 27, 2012 at the start of her shift. He gambled for several hours while she worked. When she left the shop with a canvas bag filled with notes he followed her with his face covered. Once she reached Amhurst Road in Hackney he knocked her to the floor before running off with the bag.

Tim Naylor, prosecuting, said: “She reported a robbery to the police before returning to her store for a short period of time before she left. She then crossed London to Mr Noel’s address, where she spent the night, the following day and the next evening with him.”

Chrzanowska told police she had never seen the man before and that she probably wouldn’t recognise him again.

Mr Naylor said: “She lied to police because she said she didn’t know the identity of the robber. It is the Crown’s case that she planned this incident with Noel. As a result of her false statement the police were unable to recover any of the money stolen from Paddy Power. In any event, the police then invested a great deal of time in investigating this offence.”

Chrzanowska, from Enfield, was cleared of theft following her trial last month. She admitted she knew who the robber was all along and pleaded guilty to perverting the course of justice. She was jailed for three months.

Noel was caught in January 2014 and admitted theft. He was jailed for two years.

Michael Conning, for Chrzanowska, said: “They had met some weeks previously, she had basically moved in with him, and he had already pressured her into taking out mobile phone contracts for him and pay day loans.”

He said his client had lied to police because she was intimidated by her boyfriend.

Judge David Batcup said: “You used Chrzanowska to steal £2,500. You were prepared even to push her to the ground to lend verisimilitude to your actions. I sentence you, however, not for robbery but for theft. This was a clear abuse of the trust her employers had in her.”