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Saturday, 22 September 2012


Dressed up: Rachael Martin arrived at the Truro Crown Court in Cornwall smartly dressed and appeared to be wearing expensive jewellery and carrying a designer handbag
Dressed up: Rachael Martin arrived at the Truro Crown Court in Cornwall smartly dressed and appeared to be wearing expensive jewellery and carrying a designer handbag
A young bank clerk who stole £46,000 from her employer to help achieve her dream of becoming a model told police she had earned the money from working as an escort.
Mother-of-one and law graduate Rachael Martin, 24, ‘spent money like water' after getting a job with Barclays in Liskeard, Cornwall, where she was responsible for dealing with cheques.
The stolen cash paid for a breast enlargement, thought to be worth £4,000, dental work worth £1,700, and liposuction, as well as nights out, drink and drugs.
She has now been jailed after stealing £46,000 in just two months from her employers.
Extravagances included £1,687.95 at the Windsor Place dental surgery in Liskeard, and £500 on unspecified cosmetic surgery at Harley Medical, the court heard.
Martin also lavished £670 at exclusive jewellers Tiffany, and £506 on a pair of Jimmy Choo shoes.
When she was arrested, Martin, from St Austell in Cornwall, told police she earned money as an escort in Bristol, adding that she was ‘a common prostitute’. 
But the claim was a cover for her criminal behaviour, said prosecutor Iain Leadbetter.
Recorder Jeremy Wright jailed Martin, who has an eight-year-old son, for 52 weeks, telling her she had demonstrated a ‘concerted, clever and serious breach of trust’.
Mr Wright said he gave Martin credit for pleaded guilty to 25 counts of theft - on the day her trial was due to start.
He said he had to make a judgment on whether society's interests in jailing Martin prevailed over those of her child.
He said: ‘I am told you spent the money on cosmetic surgery, drink and drugs and having a good time.
‘Your activity has been aggravated, to some extent, by the fact that suspicion would automatically be thrown on others, even if no other investigation took place.
‘You are not [your son's] sole carer, you leave him in the care of your parents whenever you like.
‘Considering the seriousness of the crime... it seems to me a mockery if I didn't send you to prison right away.'
The court heard Martin had suffered with some 'issues' since the age of 11.
Her behaviour had been described as manic, and she had previously demonstrated signs of 'sexual disinhibition and self-destruction', her counsel, Michael Melville-Shreeve, told Truro Crown Court.
Prosecuting, Mr Leadbetter said Martin began working at the Liskeard branch of Barclays in March 2010. Her role, he told the court, was to deal with agents from the Provident, taking their cheques in exchange for cash.
However, between September 2 and October 29 that year, he said she had stolen £46,000 after entering details relating to previously banked cheques into the system.
Rachael Martin
Rachael Martin
Rachael Martin, 24, posing left and right, used the cash to fund dental surgery, breast surgery and liposuction in the hope of becoming a model
She had also purposefully logged incorrect sums in order to siphon off extra cash.
She typically stole £1,000 or £2,000 at a time, putting the funds into her own account. On one occasion she took £6,000.
'She spent money like water,' he told the court. 'She spent an inordinate amount of money at a nail bar, over and over again. But it has all gone, every penny.
'During police interview, she made a complete denial (of being responsible for the theft).
'She was to say: "I have done nothing wrong, I'm not stupid."
'She described that she had earned a lot of money as an escort, "a common prostitute", she said. She would go to Bristol. But when she did go to Bristol, it was on spending sprees.'
Law graduate: Mother-of-one Martin, pictured at court in July, stole £46,000 from a Barclays bank branch over two months
Law graduate: Mother-of-one Martin, pictured left modelling and right at court in July, stole £46,000 from a Barclays bank branch over two months
Defending, Mr Melville-Shreeve said Martin was of previous good character, barring a reprimand in 2003, aged 15, for stealing a bottle of vodka.
She had graduated with debts of around £21,000, he said, but was now on the verge of bankruptcy, with her financial woes having nearly quadrupled.
'She is not the ordinary, run-of-the-mill person by any means,' he said. 'She was a very sad and unusual person (from the age of 11).
'There is a medical health issue in her background. Her spending has been, quite literally, manic. She has bought things, the consumer detritus that shops are full of.
'She has lost her reputation, lost her job, with no realistic prospect of employment.'
Sentencing Martin, of St Austell, to 52 weeks in prison, Mr Wright said: 'You are still only 24 years old, you have a long history of medical problems. These problems are clearly things to do with attention seeking as much as anything else.'
Martin, who wore a black jacket with a white and black blouse, left the dock in silence to begin her jail term. Mr Wright said she would serve half the sentence before being released on licence. 
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