A mother of six who used a stolen Co-Op dividend card to pay a £157 grocery bill has been warned she risks jail if she commits further offences.
Nicola Patmore was given a 12 community order with supervision at Lincoln Crown Court yesterday (Tuesday March 3) after she admitted charges of fraud and handling stolen goods.
But Judge John Pini QC told her: “This was an extremely mean offence. If you stoop so low as to commit offences like this again you risk an immediate prison sentence. Children or not.”
Patmore, 41, of Tennyson Road, Ruskington, used the stolen card to buy groceries at Metheringham Co-Op in February of last year.
Christopher Geeson, prosecuting, said the card belonged to a disabled woman who had been befriended by Patmore.
He said that another person took the card and gave it to Patmore who then used it to buy groceries and household goods.
Sunil Khanna, in mitigation, said the offence occurred at a time when Patmore was desperate after being sanctioned by the Department for Work and Pensions resulting in the loss of her benefits.
“The card was used to buy meat, vegetables and fruit although there were some chocolate and crisps bought for the children.
“She is ashamed by her actions. At the time she was desperate. She never took the card but when it was handed to her she used it.
“This was an opportunistic one-off offence. She did not target the victim. It was not something she planned.”
Mr Khanna said that Patmore is a chronic asthmatic who has six children and a three year old grandchild.