Woman pays back £1 for £600k fraud

Livingston sheriff court heard the Crow did not think it was worth pursuing a larger sum. Picture: Gordon McBrearty

Livingston sheriff court heard the Crow did not think it was worth pursuing a larger sum. Picture: Gordon McBrearty

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A FORMER finance director jailed for embezzling almost £600,000 is to pay back just £1.

Sharon Porter, 41, from Livingston, took the money from Escape Recruitment in the town. She was sentenced to three years’ imprisonment in January for what a sheriff called a “brazen, persistent crime”.

Porter had admitted embezzling £100,000 a year between February 2006 and October 2011, using the cash to pay off credit cards and transferring funds to a bank account she held with her husband. When the fraud was discovered she paid back £4500.

The Crown and her defence lawyers agreed she had benefited to the tune of £575,285. But after months of negotiations, they agreed a deal for her to pay a nominal £1 in a proceeds of crime action. They said Porter had such limited assets it was not worth pursuing a larger sum. Defence lawyer Neil Stewart told Livingston sheriff court: “This will effectively conclude matters.”