Secretary 'stole from company to buy cars'
A former company secretary has appeared in court charged with cheating more than half a million pounds from her boss to take a private jet to Paris and buy luxury cars and Premiership football tickets.
Helen Maria Hart, 45, is also accused of stealing £46,500 in a garage deal to buy a Mercedes car using a Coutts bank account.
The 25 counts she faces involve using the company cheque book to buy a Porsche Boxster, a Range Rover, a BMW X5 and tickets for a Chelsea and Manchester City match.
Prosecutors also argue she used funds from the architecture and civil engineering firm to pay her rent, water bills, wine, Marks & Spencer bill and work on her house.
Yesterday Hart, of Alexandra Road, Redruth, appeared at Truro Magistrates Court on charges of fraud, deception and theft.
Magistrates adjourned the case until July 6, when she returns for a committal hearing to Truro Crown Court. She was released on unconditional bail.
Hart is accused of conning PDP Green Consulting Ltd, based in Truro, between October 2005 and May last year.
Among the allegations are claims that Hart fradulently paid £4,985 for 48 bottles of wine and £2,000 for work on her kitchen.
She is accused of fraudulently using a cheque from her bank account in November 2010 to pay a private jet charter company £5,990 for a return Exeter to Paris flight.
It is also alleged that in August last year she dishonestly obtained a return flight between Exeter and Cardiff with cheque for £3,800 involving Dragonfly Aviation Services LLP.
Using the company cheque book in March last year, she is alleged to have paid £4,752 for tickets and hospitality for the Chelsea v Manchester City match.
In a separate charge, she is accused of stealing £391,353 from the company as an employee between October 2005 and May last year.
After she left the company between April and May this year, she is charged with buying a Mercedes from a garage at Probus, near Truro, fraudulently.
It is said she used funds from a Coutts Bank account while at the same time securing money from Handelsbanken to pay for the vehicle, pocketing £46,500.