Single-mum tried to cash fake cheques at pawn brokers

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A FAREHAM woman has been made to pay compensation after fraudulently cashing cheques at a pawn brokers.

Sharmaine Whittingham, 22, from Bishopsfield Road, tried to cash three cheques on two separate dates at three stores. She admitted three counts of fraud by false representation.

Portsmouth Magistrates’ Court heard that Whittingham had walked away with £896.25 on one occasion and £854.11 on another. One of the incidents took place on November 28 in Gosport and the other two on December 14 in Havant and Portsmouth.

Each time Whittingham would claim that she was being paid by DBS Management or by BA European.

On the last occasion, staff became suspicious and she left the store without her identification or the cheque.

Whittingham told police in interview that she had been persuaded to cash the cheques by a third party.

She said that she had felt under pressure as a single parent in the run-up to Christmas and that she was only paid £100 for each successful occasion.

Chairman of the bench at Portsmouth Magistrates’ Court Stephen Waller said that Whittingham had ‘allowed herself to be used’ and that ‘it was not a particularly large amount of money.’

Whittingham was ordered to pay £100 compensation to DBS Management, £100 to BA European, a £60 victim surcharge, and ordered to do 20 hours at an adult attendance centre.