Woman cleared of theft charges

A woman accused of stealing her friend’s debit card and withdrawing $1,800 has been cleared of the theft charges.

The accused and the complainant were said to have been co-workers and good friends.

Court documents reveal that after noticing her debit card was missing, the complainant reported it and another one was issued. A few months later, the second card also went missing, which prompted the complainant to contact her bank.

According to court documents, the woman was notified of a series of withdrawals from her bank account. The police were called, and a formal report was made.

In that report, the complainant told police she never gave her card to anyone, nor did she give anyone permission to access her bank account to withdraw money.

During the police investigation, CCTV video was recovered which showed a woman using an ATM machine to access the complainant’s bank account. According to the court documents the woman, 39, was caught on CCTV footage making six withdrawals from the complainant’s account, from 20-22 July 2018. Each time she took $300.

The court documents also state that the accused and the complainant would visit the ATM machine at the same time when they got paid and, because they were good friends, the complainant would at times leave her unsupervised in her house. The court documents went on to say the accused woman, from the Philippines, was aware of where the complainant kept her debit card, and it was thought that she stole the card during a time when her friend left the room for a few minutes.

She was subsequently arrested and charged with six counts of theft. On 1 May 2019, she pleaded not guilty to the charges but agreed to repay the complainant. The prosecution accepted the plea and told the court that should the woman repay the money by 30 Jan. 2020 and make a full apology to the complainant, they would be prepared to offer no evidence.

On 30 Jan., the prosecution offered no evidence against the accused, and the judge returned formal not guilty verdicts and imposed no fines. The woman was released from her bail.

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