Gambling addict steals thousands from post office

A gambling addict stole more than £27,000 from a village post office where he worked forcing his boss to sell business

Daniel Metcalfe, 23, managed to take hundreds of pounds each week for nine months from the post office in High Street, Brandon.

Ipswich Crown Court heard that Metcalfe, of Wake Avenue, Mildenhall, covered his tracks by adjusting records for the number of postage stamps being held in stock.

The court heard that the sub postmaster was personally liable for the losses and this had contributed to his decision to sell the business.

Prosecutor Michael Crimp said Metcalfe was confronted in April when irregularities were uncovered during an audit conducted by Post Office officials.

It was then that Metcalfe admitted to the sub postmaster that he had been taking several hundred pounds each week since July last year to help fund his addiction to gambling.

Metcalfe, who worked as a clerk, pleaded guilty to theft from an employer and was jailed by Judge John Holt for 18 months.

He told Metcalfe: “Your employer, the sub postmaster, is responsible for the loss. He had complete trust in you to be honest and reliable and the loss to him has become a major reason for his decision to sell the business.”

The court heard that Metcalfe had no previous convictions.

In mitigation, Ian James said Metcalfe realised that it was inevitable that the thefts would eventually be discovered. He was genuinely remorseful.

Metcalfe accepted that he had problems with gambling and the court heard he had sought help from Gamblers’ Anonymous.