Jun 22 2011 by Stephen Robertson, Stirling Observer Wednesday
A BAR worker stole £1700 from her employers after getting hooked on playing fruit machines.
Stirling Sheriff Court heard that Ann Liddell (51) was working at the Chalet Bar in Stirling and started taking the cash to play the machine during quiet spells.
The theft took place between January 2009 and March 2010 and led to Liddell being sacked when it came to light.
Liddell, of Westerton, Cowie, pleaded guilty to the theft.
Her solicitor Frazer McCready said: “She had been working at the premises for some time.
“She tells me that she had a lot of spare time on her hands when she was working, waiting for the bar to open or when the bar was quiet.
“She tells me that she passed the time by beginning to play the fruit machines.
“She has never had a gambling problem and, prior to her employment in the Chalet Bar, had never played these.”
Soon Liddell was using “all of her earnings” to play the machine and started to take money from the bar cash float.
He said that Liddell would sometimes put her winnings back into the float but that she also continued gambling with these.
Mr McCready added: “This quite clearly spiralled out of control. She is ashamed of her behaviour.”
The court was told that the exact sum of money stolen was not fully established as some had clearly been put back into the fruit machine on the premises.
Sentencing, Sheriff William Gilchrist said: “This is a serious offence.
“It is a gross breach of trust to steal money from your employer and £1700 is a significant amount.”
He ordered Liddell to do 120 hours of community service and pay £500 compensation.