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Gloucestershire Business News

Delivery driver admits £45,000 fraud

A Yodel delivery driver who was part of a fraud involving £45,000 worth of computer equipment walked away from Gloucester crown court with a conditional discharge today.

Sandeep Singh, 24, of Dangerfield Lane, Wednesbury, West Midlands, admitted fraud by abuse of his position as a delivery driver with Yodel between 18th January and 20th April 2016.

Prosecutor, Chloe Griggs, told Judge Ian Lawrie QC "A company called EBuyer UK contracted their deliveries to Yodel.

"The EBuyer fraud team then spotted that a large number of the same product, Asus notebook computers, was being ordered from the same area in Gloucestershire.

"They asked their security team to carry out an investigation."

She said that Singh had been the driver on many of the suspicious deliveries of the Asus computers.

"Someone was ordering them online, paying with a card, putting forward a real address and using the home owners name," he said, before adding that the owner of the card had not been traced.

She said that Singh would pretend to carry out the deliveries, attend the address, falsify the signature and keep the parcels.

Mrs Griggs said that the total number of suspect deliveries was 117.

"It was on an almost daily basis. None of those deliveries were genuine. It is believed that all of those deliveries were part of the scam," the prosecutor said.

She added that Singh had told the police that he would pass the parcels on to a third party. He said he expected to be paid £50 for each one, but asserted that he had not received any payment by the time of his arrest.

The judge noted that with the goods valued at £45,000 this was a serious case, but Ms Griggs said "This is the difficulty. There is no loser in this case, because the laptops were paid for."

She said "Whoever's card it was would have had a significant loss, but couldn't be traced."

"In reality there isn't a loss," the judge noted, before adding that Singh had "clearly been dishonest and devious."

Matthew Harbinson representing Singh said "What I couldn't understand was, what difference does it make if you don't deliver a parcel that was never intended or expected, if it has been paid for?"

However Mr Harbinson accepted that "by acting in the way he did, he jeopardised the relationship of Yodel with EBuyer, and left them open to civil action from Ebuyer."

Mr Harbinson said "Yodel have confirmed they have had no loss."

The judge said "This is unusual. At the moment no one can identify a victim in terms of a loss.

"I'm going to give him a conditional discharge. He's clearly been deceitful, but unless someone comes to court and says 'I've been conned out of this money' there is no loser."

Turning to Singh he said "By your own actions you have brought these proceedings on yourself. Despite your actions, no one can be seen to have suffered a loss."

Alongside the 24 month conditional discharge, Singh was ordered to pay a contribution of £200 to the costs of the prosecution.

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