Judge slams fraudster for 'deliberately' getting pregnant to avoid jail... then lets her walk free

Silhouette of pregnant woman

A judge today accused fraudster Imogen Glyne of 'deliberately' getting pregnant to avoid prison

A woman fraudster was accused by a judge today of 'deliberately' getting pregnant to avoid prison - and then allowed to walk free from court.

Imogen Glyne, 26, whose daughter is due in March, had worked as an accounts administrator for Transport for London for just six months when a gang of swindlers recruited her as an 'insider'.

London's Southwark Crown Court heard she supplied them with false letters seemingly from two of TfL's suppliers asking for their bank details to be changed.
That would have enabled cash to be diverted into accounts controlled by the gang.

An initial attempt, involving Frankham Consultancy Group, failed when the wrong sort code aroused suspicions.

But the next, targeting advertising giant M&C Saatchi, saw nearly £65,000 paid out.

However, Glyne's co-defendant Nicholas Simpson only managed to get away with just over £8,800.

When he tried to transfer the rest into three other accounts, bank staff suspected something was wrong, made inquiries and discovered the fraud.

The court heard Glyne, of Narrow Boat Close, Thamesmead, south-east London, was subsequently arrested and then pleaded guilty to using a false instrument the previous November.

At the same time she was ordered to stand trial on two counts of obtaining money transfers by deception. By the time she was found guilty, she was pregnant.

Recorder Jonathan Laidlaw, QC, told her she was guilty of a 'gross breach of trust' during a 'clever scheme which took advantage of the inside knowledge you had acquired'.

He continued: 'I make it clear I want to send you straight to prison. That is the correct thing for me to do and the sentence would be one of 12 months imprisonment.

'The difficulty I face is this. If I send you to prison for 12 months now your baby, due in March, 2008, will be born in Holloway prison.

'If I do that it will add to the burden of the prison services. Of course, they would cope, but it will make things difficult and resources to care for expectant mothers are not perhaps as extensive as they might ideally be.

'You became pregnant following your arrest and after the time you pleaded guilty. I do harbour the gravest of suspicions that was done deliberately with these proceedings in mind.

'But however much you deserve to go to prison I am not prepared to have a child to start his or her life in a prison in London.'

The recorder added he was therefore going to suspend the 12-month term for two years, impose a 24-month supervision order and order her to complete 150 hours of unpaid work.

Simpson, 23, of Alnwick Road, Canning Town, east London, who admitted both deception counts and one of attempting to transfer criminal property, was jailed for 12 months.

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