Fraudulent Wisbech eBay seller who profited from employer jailed by Peterborough Crown Court

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A fraudster who sold ink cartridges purchased on her company credit card for a profit using her personal eBay account has been jailed for 20 months.

Jessica Prince, 35, of North Brink, Wisbech, was suspected of fraud after her employer’s accountant received an invoice from an un-registered supplier.

Jessica Prince, 35, of North Brink, Wisbech

Jessica Prince, 35, of North Brink, Wisbech

It was discovered the company had spent more than £48,000 on ink cartridges and other office equipment in the space of seven months, with invoices being doctored to conceal what was actually being ordered.

Prince had been employed as the company director’s personal secretary and was responsible for the smooth running and administration of the company office, including ordering stationery, office furniture, booking taxis, flights and hotels.

An internal investigation revealed Prince had been abusing her position to make large purchases but hiding it from the company director and accountant.

She was arrested on 26 July last year and in interview admitted having used her company’s credit card to purchase items and then sell them on for profit.

Officers were told it started off as a mistake after she accidentally purchased the wrong printer toner and was told it was non-refundable. She claimed she was told to sell it through eBay and give the money back to her company. She used her own personal eBay account to sell the toner but kept the money.

This was the first of many instances, placing bigger orders worth thousands of pounds on the company credit card, selling them on for a profit using her personal eBay account.

Prince told officers she “got a buzz from treating her family and friends to nice things they could not afford” but “felt like scum at work because she knew she was committing fraud”.

Today (Friday, 1 March), Prince appeared at Peterborough Crown Court after admitting a charge of dishonestly making false representation with intent to make a gain for herself and to cause loss to another, at a previous hearing.

Detective Constable Mark Yendley said: “Prince saw an opportunity and took it, abusing her position as a company secretary and having access to company funds.

“She has shown great remorse and is sorry what she did, but that doesn’t make it any easier for her employer who has lost tens of thousands of pounds.”