A caravan park receptionist who rifled residents’ mail and used their bank details to treat herself to luxuries worth more than £6,000 has been jailed for 10 months.
Samantha Dicicco (26) took bank cards from the victims’ post at the Forest of Pendle Leisure Park, Roughlee, and went on an internet spending spree, ordering Christian Dior make-up, designer shoes, clothes and equestrian equipment for her horse riding hobby, Burnley Crown Court heard.
The hearing was told one of her victims was a vulnerable 76-year-old who had not long been widowed and was also mourning the loss of her dog.
Dicicco had cuddled and hugged the pensioner as if she cared, but was stealing from her.
Dicicco even paid a court fine after opening a credit card account in the name of another elderly resident and in total fleeced her out of almost £5,000.
Dicicco claimed she turned to crime after, aged 21, she became one of the youngest women ever to have a hysterectomy, didn’t get any support and was left with mental health issues.
The serial fraudster previously left her best friend Abbie Brown distraught and in debt when she pretended to be her in a Facebook and catalogues scam.
Dicicco had been on police bail for the caravan park offences when she stole £250 from another victim and cashed a cheque from a book pinched from a family friend, netting £820. One of the victims was 72.
Jobless Dicicco, of Beech Tree Close, Nelson, has now been locked up for the first time, after admitting nine thefts and frauds and one count of interfering with mail. She was ordered to pay £2,000 compensation.
Lisa Worsley (prosecuting) said from last September several caravan park residents reported theft of mail to the police.
She said: “Investigations commenced and it transpired cards that had been expected to be delivered, along with PIN numbers, had been intercepted and a number of fraudulent purchases had been made in residents’ names.”
Laura Nash (defending) told the crown court she was aware of the ramifications of her offending and she was remorseful.
Miss Nash said the defendant had a hysterectomy for endometriosis at the age of 21.
She told the court: “She tells me she received no support. She received no psychological intervention.”
Miss Nash said Dicicco, who had wanted to be a midwife, had made an attempt on her life. She was on the waiting list for cognitive behavioural therapy.
Sentencing, Judge Beverley Lunt told the defendant the offences were an abuse of power and responsibility.
She said: “You abused that trust on multiple occasions, intercepting cards and PIN numbers and using them for ordering frivolous goods from the internet. Any opportunity you had to steal from these people you did so.”