Singleton Hospital admin worker in "hamfisted" fraud
A HOSPITAL admin worker suffering from post-traumatic stress disorder defrauded the health service out of more than £1,500, a court has heard.
Diane Freimans submitted a series of false receipts for food and catering supplies in her role as manager of Singleton's Postgraduate Centre.
Swansea Magistrates Court heard the 52-year-old, of Queen's Road, Mumbles, had suffered a series of family traumas in the run up to the fraud, and had credit cards, loans and unpaid rent hanging over her.
Former nurse Freimans had previously pleaded guilty to fraud by false representation between April and September 2011 when she appeared for sentencing.
The court heard that part of Freimans' role at the hospital was organising catering for meetings and conferences, and it was in this capacity that she created a series of fictitious receipts from suppliers and claimed the money, as well as buying extra food items from supermarkets which she kept for herself.
Her solicitor, Del Cudd, said his client was a woman of previously clean character who had suffered a number of personal tragedies in her life — her father, who she had cared for the last 15 years of his life, had died in 2009 while her husband became so unwell he could not work and then he too died, in 2011, leaving her with large debts.
Mr Cudd said the result was that Freimans was suffering with post- traumatic stress disorder.
He said: "She returned to work when she was plainly unfit so to do — she did not cope very well."
He described the false receipts she made as "ham-fisted" and discovery of the fraud had been inevitable.
He added: "Lessons have been learned. She deeply regrets the commission of these offences. Her life is now in a much better place."
Magistrates told Freimans that the breach of trust involved in theft from an employer was an aggravating factor, and sentenced her to a 12- month community order with 120 hours of unpaid work.
She must also complete a financial management course.