Fergbaker thief caught red-handed

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A trusted Brit at a prominent Queenstown bakery has been sentenced for dipping her fingers in the till.

Neetal Dandgey, 25, was convicted of a charge of theft by a person in a special relationship after admitting stealing $2900 cash from Fergbaker.

In Queenstown’s district court yesterday Judge Christina Cook told Dandgey she was a trusted employee “and you abused that trust repeatedly over a period of time”.

Dandgey was sentenced to 160 hours’ community work and ordered to pay $1085.51 in reparation – which took off her holiday and back pay.

Prosecuting Sergeant Ian Collin says the business caught Dandgey “red­handed” after having security cameras installed.

A significant term of community work was needed to make her accountable, he says, and to serve as a deterrent to others.

Dandgey’s lawyer, Liam Collins, says the Brit hadn’t been “living the high life” while stealing but was saving funds to travel home because her mother was unwell.

She had done 30 hours’ voluntary work at charity organisation Queenstown Cat Rescue.

Dandgey began working at the Shotover St bakery last July, a month after arriving in the resort.

By October she was a shift supervisor on night shift with responsibility for placing cash and till receiptsin a safe for banking the next day.

In early January, after she was given access codes to the safe, staff noticed cash discrepancies were beginning to increase.

When confronted by her employer in March, she admitted to taking $30 from the till, but later told police she had taken between $500 and $600 from the safe during the previous five to six weeks.

She finally admitted to stealing $2900.

Otago Daily Times