A man who embezzled nearly £4,000 from an Aberdeen electrical store has been ordered to repay every penny to the employer he stole from.
Dale Kirkpatrick stole thousands of pounds from an electrical store in Bridge of Don over six months by transferring money from store cards to unauthorised cards.
The 28-year-old was caught red-handed when a team of auditors came in to look over the books.
Under questioning, Kirkpatrick finally admitted to embezzling more than £3,891 to service debt he had built up through a gambling addiction.
Accused transferred money to his own cards
Fiscal depute Sean Ambrose told Aberdeen Sheriff Court that in early June 2021, Kirkpatrick was seen on CCTV camera footage alone in the main office at the Electric Centre in Bridge of Don.
“One the accused was content that no other staff was around, he made his way over to the cupboard, where he knew the petty cash was kept, and took £120, which he pocketed,” Mr Ambrose said.
“Later that day, the accused took a stack of money into a van whilst counting it.”
On December 14 2021, two auditors arrived at the store to speak with Kirkpatrick about card sales that had been refunded onto various unauthorised cards.
He was questioned about a number of transactions that took place, which had been transferred onto another card.
After initially denying knowledge of some of the transactions, Kirkpatrick admitted that he was “£30,000 in debt” and was “struggling” to keep up with the payments on his debt management plan.
He stated that he had “transferred the money into his account to ease the debt” he was paying off.
Kirkpatrick was then questioned about a second card and admitted that both cards used to transfer money had belonged to him.
The total amount embezzled by Kirkpatrick between June 1 and December 31 2021 was £3,891.46.
‘Clearly has gambling issue’
Defence solicitor Jenny Logan told the court that her client “understands the impact this has had on the company and he has apologised for that”.
She added: “Mr Kirkpatrick has taken full responsibility for his actions. He clearly has a gambling issue and he has taken steps to address this after attending debt management.
“My understanding is that he intended to pay back the money but that unfortunately was not a situation the company was satisfied with – and that’s why we’re here today.”
Sheriff Rhona Wark told Kirkpatrick, of Ashwood Park, Aberdeen, that it was clear he had “a bit of an issue” but added that to his “credit” he was taking steps to address his problems.
Sheriff Wark ordered him to repay the full amount of £3,891.46 by making a compensation order.
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