Great Barton woman jailed for fraudulent loan from pensioner she met on Honington dog walks

Ipswich Crown Court. Picture: PHIL MORLEY

Ipswich Crown Court. Picture: PHIL MORLEY - Credit: Archant

A woman who duped an 81-year-old Suffolk widower out of more than £5,000 and spent £1,000 of the money on a cruise has been jailed for 21 weeks.

Sandra Bultitude got to know the man while they were walking their dogs in Honington and she visited his home, Ipswich Crown Court heard.

He trusted her and was initially persuaded to lend her small sums of money which she repaid, said Nicola May, prosecuting.

That led to her asking him for a loan of £5,000 in February 2015 after telling him she was waiting for an insurance payout.

The victim had given Bultitude his bank card and PIN so she could withdraw money because he didn’t want to go to the bank himself.

Miss May said Bultitude had told the victim she needed money to pay for an abortion for her son’s girlfriend and to pay for repairs after her son crashed his car.

The court heard that in March last year the man noticed two transactions in his bank statement that he didn’t recognise - one was for £212 at Tesco’s and the other for £54 at a service station.

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When he challenged Bultitude about them she didn’t deny using his bank card and said she would “sort the money out”, said Miss May.

The court heard the offences came to light after the man had a heart attack and his relatives became suspicious.

Bultitude, 52, of Ixworth Road in Great Barton, admitted three offences of fraud and failing to attend court last week.

Sentencing her Judge David Goodin said she had taken advantage of the victim so she could “enjoy some of the finer things in life” and had spent £1,200 of the money on a cruise.

He described what she had done as “cruel and mean-minded” and said she had exploited the trust placed in her by the victim.

Mark Roochove, representing Bultitude, said she was ashamed of what she had done and disgusted with herself.

He said she had been in debt and misusing alcohol and had wanted to keep up the pretence that everything in her life was normal when it wasn’t.