Back in December, Bingo Hideout reported on the case of Barbara Taylor from Leigh, who admitted to abusing her neighbour’s trust by gambling away her friend’s savings. We can now report that judgement has been made and Taylor’s crime has resulted in a 12 month prison sentence.
Taylor, 58, provided informal personal care and living support for her elderly infirm neighbour by running errands and doing her shopping. Unfortunately, as time went by Taylor succumbed to the temptation of using her neighbour’s bank cards for her own means. Taylor is said to have visited the local bingo hall in Leigh, using her victim’s cards to withdraw cash at the onsite ATM.
Her victim, 77 year old Elizabeth Bailey only discovered what had been going on when none of her bills via direct debit were being paid and she was unable to withdraw any money herself. She had considered Taylor a close and helpful friend but this friendship was abused beyond belief. The fact that Taylor had provided considerable support for Bailey and also worked as a volunteer at a project helping women with alcohol problems were noted in her defence.
At Liverpool Crown Court, Judge Bryn Holloway took into account these points and assessed that their friendship had been so close that Bailey felt able to trust Taylor with her bank cards in the understanding that they were to be used honestly but in time, the opposite was found to be the case.
The total cash amount stolen was claimed to be £11,670 which Taylor used mainly to feed her bingo and gaming machines habit. Additionally, she was found to have used the cards to buy tanning cream and camping equipment to the value of £136. Judge Holloway took into account the fact Taylor had no previous convictions but said a custodial sentence was the only fitting punishment for the crime.
In her defence, Stephen Swift, asserted that Taylor’s actions were governed by her addiction to bingo and the arrangement with Bailey had initially been out of kindness. He also claimed that Taylor’s poor health will make her sentence very difficult for her to handle. Barbara Taylor was sentenced to 12 months imprisonment.
Although it is still rare for crimes like this to occur, the Bingo Hideout team felt that we should take this opportunity to let any players know who are worried about their level of gambling, that there agencies in place who aim to provide support. These include organisations like GamCare and Rank Group’s Stay In Control website, which also offers on site help at Mecca Bingo halls around the country.