Former bank employee jailed for stealing more than £50,000 from elderly and vulnerable people customers

A former Hampshire bank employee has been jailed for two years after stealing more than £50,000 from the accounts of elderly and vulnerable people.

A court heard that between May 2014 and December 2014, 23-year-old Natasha Bassi carried out 17 unauthorised transactions on the accounts of 14 customers, totalling £53,219.

A Hampshire police spokeswoman said: “It was only when two of the customers noticed money missing from their accounts and raised their concerns with Santander that Bassi was caught.

“The bank called police and an investigation got under way which identified the true scale of her crimes.”

Detective Constable Hannah Ellis said: “Bassi transferred money from the bank’s most vulnerable customers.

“It would have been distressing for her victims when they discovered the money missing from their accounts.

“As well as risking the financial wellbeing of several vulnerable and elderly customers, her actions also had a detrimental effect on Santander.

“We worked alongside Santander throughout this investigation to identify all those affected and the bank ensured all customers were compensated accordingly.”

A spokeswoman for the bank said: “Santander takes fraud extremely seriously and always co-operates fully with the authorities to ensure justice is served.

“We suspended Natasha Bassi in December 2014 after identifying fraudulent activity and notified the police. We worked closely with the authorities and ensured that all customers were fully refunded.”

Bassi, of Cobden Crescent, Southampton, pleaded guilty at Southampton Crown Court to fraud by abusing her position of trust.