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PUBLISHED: 11:39 17 June 2010 | UPDATED: 18:02 25 August 2010

A TEENAGER who was aided by her mother to fleece thousands of pounds out of her employer has been handed a suspended sentence.

A TEENAGER who was aided by her mother to fleece thousands of pounds out of her employer has been handed a suspended sentence.

Divelle Williams-Reid, 18, of Prestwood Close, Plumstead, admitted 17 counts of theft and attempted theft in Southwark Crown Court, last Thursday. Her mother, Michelle Reid, 35, of the same address, removed items off the rails of Topshop in Oxford Street and handed them over to her daughter, who then removed the security tags and scanned the items through as refunds. The teenager, who now works at Marks and Spencer, claims she was angry at Topshop bosses after making her redundant and wanted revenge.

Her school friend Toni Wole-Ajibode, 18, of Frankham Street, Deptford, was also part of the scam. Ms Williams-Reid handed over £4,570 in cash to the pair before she was caught.

Prosecutor Miranda Jollie said Ms Reid was seen at the store on January 22 this year on her daughter's last day at work.

The first time £516 was refunded to the mother's card and £222 to school friend Wole-Ajibode.

Judge Michael Gledhill said Ms Williams-Reid was guilty of "an abuse of trust" and blasted her mother for her failings as a parent. He said: "At 35, you should know much better."

The mother and daughter were sentenced to nine months in custody, suspended for 18 months. They were each ordered to do 180 hours of unpaid work and each pay £1,523 in compensation and £180 prosecution costs.

Wole-Ajibode received a four month suspended sentence and ordered her to pay the same amounts in compensation and costs, with 100 hours of unpaid work.


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