The Wokingham Paper

Shinfield woman ordered to pay back £660,000 to TWO employers

evelyn gore strachan  WEB
Evelyn Gore-Strachan

A Shinfield woman who, two years ago, was found guilty of stealing from two former employers has been ordered to pay back £660,000 in compensation, following an investigation by Thames Valley Police.

The ruling was made earlier this week and if it is not paid within six months, she could be ordered to spend at least five years in jail on top of her current sentence.

Evelyn Gore-Strachan, 43 and previously of Monarch Drive, was jailed on April 22, 2016 for 12 years after pleading guilty to nine counts of fraud by abuse of position.

This sentence was reduced on appeal to nine-and-a-half years in January 2017.

Between April 2008 and December 2012, while employed as an accountant at Webtech Wireless in Reading, she defrauded the company of £809,776.

Between March 2013 and June 2015, while employed as a financial director of Britannia Pharmaceuticals Ltd, Reading, she defrauded the company of £1,000,614.

Following her sentencing in April 2016, the Economic Crime Unit of Thames Valley Police commenced confiscation proceedings under the Proceeds Of Crime Act (POCA).

This culminated in two-day hearing at Reading Crown Court and, on Tuesday, January 23, 2018, a judge granted a POCA Confiscation Order, ordering Gore-Strachan to pay a total of £666,000 in compensation – £224,000 to Webtech Wireless and £442,000 to Britannia Pharmaceuticals Ltd.

Gore-Strachan has three months to pay, which may be extended by a further three months. If she does not fully meet the terms the order, she could face an additional prison sentence of up to five-and-a-half years.

Investigating officer, Detective Inspector Gavin Tyrrell, of Thames Valley Police’s Economic Crime Unit, said: “This investigation involved a significant amount of money fraudulently obtained over seven years, laundered through numerous accounts and individuals in the UK and abroad.

“The victims will be rightfully compensated and the Proceeds of Crime Act enables a further term of imprisonment should Gore-Strachan not co-operate by satisfying the order.

“Thames Valley Police will rigorously pursue the recovery of proceeds of crime and ensure that, in the end, crime does not pay.”

Gore-Strachan was originally charged on November 24, 2015 and pleaded guilty to the fraud charges at Reading Crown Court on January 26, 2016.

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