TWO women who together cheated an elderly man out of more than £17,000 in a ‘wicked fraud’ have been granted more time to pay back the money.
Amanda Joan Louis (52) and her daughter, Shannon Stephanie Bellas (27), befriended the 83-year-old man and then bombarded him with messages asking to borrow cash for ‘emergencies’ or medical bills – always promising to pay him back but never intending to.
Over the course of 20 months, Bellas received £11,317 from the man and Louis received £6,127.
The pair were convicted of fraud by the Royal Court in September last year, but were spared a prison sentence so that they could continue working and earning the money to pay the victim back. Bellas was ordered to pay him £400 per month and Louis £350 per month.
Both were also sentenced to 240 hours of community service.
Jurats at the Royal Court on Friday ‘reluctantly’ agreed to their request to reduce their monthly repayments, with Bellas paying £250 and Louis paying £200.
Advocate Nicholas Mière, representing both women, explained that neither could afford the previous monthly sums.
He said Bellas had lost her job and Louis had been working as a cleaner, but had been signed off after injuring her knee and was now only working reduced hours.
Lieutenant Bailiff Anthony Olsen said that the elderly man had been relying on his savings and a small pension for his retirement and had ended up giving much of his money to the two fraudsters.
He told them: ‘Your victim could ill afford to suffer these losses. This was a mean and nasty exploitation and a wicked fraud.’
He added that the court had put the interests of the victim first in sparing them prison in order to let them earn the money to repay him, but noted that the payments to date had been ‘sporadic and inadequate’.
However he added: ‘We reluctantly grant the appeal.’
The women were ordered to return to court on 28 July and warned that if they were found not to be paying the new rates, they could face prison.
The Jurats presiding were Kim Averty and David Le Heuzé.