Wednesday 27th September, 2017
A woman who stole £600,000 from her parents’ company has been jailed for fraud. Aimee Purchase, 36 and husband Rikki, 38, defrauded MI Engineering Ltd , an engineering company owned by her parents.
She stole the money from her parents, after her husband put her under pressure to commit the crime, so he could fund a rival business. Judge Jim Tindal told Shrewbury Crown Court: ‘Aimee Purchase was part of her family’s business and she took the opportunity to effectively defraud that business.
‘It is perfectly obvious to me that Aimee Purchase used her position to siphon the funds under the influence or pressure from her husband. ‘She was the only one who had access to the money.’
Police officers discovered that the money had been either paid into the name of Monster Tuning Limited, or credited to accounts belonging to Aimee and Rikki Purchase.
Detective Inspector Emma Wright, from Warwickshire Police’s Economic Crime Unit, said: ‘Enquiries revealed that the money stolen from MI Engineering Limited had been used to fund the couple’s lifestyle and also to support Rikki Purchase’s company Monster Tuning Limited.’
Prosecutor Charles Hamer told the court how Mrs Purchase pleaded guilty to fraud by abuse of a position of trust in April, causing a loss to the company of £667,175.71.
Mr Hamer said: ‘The plea was under the Fraud Act but not all of it would have been related to her criminality. Her figure came down to about £570,000.
‘Ultimately Rikki Purchase pleaded guilty and the total cash converted by him was £191,620.98.’
Mrs Purchase was jailed for 32 months and Mr Purchase was handed a two year suspended sentence.
Both defendants will now also face proceedings to recover the assets stolen, under the Proceeds of Crime Act 2002. This process can allow for victims to be compensated and denies criminals the benefits of their crimes.