BusinessCompany NewsFD faces stiff sentence for seven-figure theft

FD faces stiff sentence for seven-figure theft

Sharon Bridgewater admits filching millions of pounds from clients in order to bankroll her extravagant lifestyle

A finance boss is facing a lengthy jail term after pleading guilty to theft
charges.

Sharon Bridgewater, a lapsed CIMA student, concealed a criminal past to get
the FD job at Bloomsbury-based marketing company Hicklin Slade & Partners,
before she started dipping into the coffers, Southwark Crown Court heard this
week.

Back in 1996, she plead guilty to eight false accounting offences relating to
the theft of £25,000 while an accounts manager at Dyna-Five, a computer hardware
firm in Epsom, but only received 150 hours community service.

In the current case, the court heard how she used the ill-gotten gains to buy
a ‘jaw-dropping’ collection of cars including six Porsches, a £90,000
state-of-the-art entertainment system and similar amounts on luxury holidays and
expensive furniture.

Having illegally taken £2m from Hicklin Slade, she handed in her notice and
took a job at radio recording company Universal Sound Principles, where she
stole £55,000, the prosecution said.

Her crimes were only exposed after Hicklin Slade turned to auditors to help
identify why their company was in such a ‘parlous financial state’.

Bridgewater plead guilty to 16 counts of theft between August 1999 and May
2005.

She also admitted two charges of furnishing false information and one of
perverting the course of justice by attempting to hide assets following a High
Court freezing order after her arrest.

She is due to be sentenced on 26 October.

.

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