Crumlin worker overpaid for two years in court for theft
A HARD-UP health care worker talked of having an extension built on her house and buying a hot tub, after an administrative error led to her receiving nearly double her salary for two years, a court heard.
Ann Barnes’ line manager told Cardiff Crown Court that Barnes needed compassionate leave amid fears that she would lose her house because of financial difficulties, but was suddenly turning down extra shifts and buying an expensive ballgown.
Barnes, 47, of Prince Andrew Road, Crumlin, is on trial for theft after denying taking £3,326.38 she wasn’t entitled to between April 2009 and January 2011.
Prosecutor Nicholas Gedge told the court that Barnes was a part-time call handler for the Aneurin Bevan Health Board out-of-hours GP service based at Cwmbran, working 19.5 hours a week.
In February 2009 she was promoted to the role of assistant senior operational co-ordinator on a pay band two levels higher.
Mr Gedge said that in March 2009 Barnes received two pay slips – one for a new wage of £822 and one for an old wage of £612, with both amounts paid to her.
In April 2009, pay roll officer Sadie Titcombe asked her why she was getting two wages and only giving in one timesheet.
Ms Titcombe told the court that Barnes told her as one of her jobs was nine to five, she didn’t need to give a payslip in for that one. Mr Gedge said that, between February 2009 and April 2011, Barnes should have received £19,954 for a new 16.5 hours a week role but instead received over £33,000.
After being arrested Barnes said that on taking her new job she was unclear of her newwage but knewshe would be substantially better off, the court heard.
Barnes’ line manager Ann Poyner told the court Barnes had financial difficulties in 2006 and was granted compassionate leave to sort out her financial problems, amid fears she would lose her home.
But Ms Poyner said she later started talking about buying an expensive ballgown for her daughter’s graduation, a holiday, and having an extension built on her house.
Ms Poyner said she offered her a bank holiday shift, thinking she would need the money because of her previous financial problems. She said she was “a bit shocked” when she was told by Barnes that the defendant was going for a meal with her husband and then to the garden centre to look at buying a hot tub, so couldn’t work the shift.
Ms Poyner eventually contacted payroll after realising something wasn’t right.