A man who spent more than two years stealing money from an elderly woman who trusted him has been sent to prison.

Francis Farnan, from Dover, took advantage of his victim, an elderly and disabled woman who was close to him. Rather than looking after her interests, he put himself in charge of her finances, wrote cheques and withdrew cash from her bank accounts totalling £92,388.

The 63-year-old was arrested after a member of the victim’s family took his concerns to Kent Police in August 2018. Bank statements showed that transactions, of which the victim had been unaware, had taken place between April 2016 and October 2018.

One of the cheques Farnan wrote to himself was for just over £46,000 and bank documents that belonged to the victim were found at his home address. He was also found to have opened a Post Office account in his victim’s name, deposited money and then systematically withdrew cash on several occasions.

Farnan admitted theft and was jailed for two and a half years at Canterbury Crown Court on Thursday 17 December 2020.

Detective Constable Matthew Herriott, of Kent Police, said: ‘I would like to thank the victim’s family and friends for their support during the investigation. Without their vigilance, the defendant would have continued to deplete the victim’s savings.

‘Francis Farnan stole in excess of £92,000, leaving his victim, an elderly and vulnerable lady, close to being penniless. I can only hope that the sentence is long enough for him to reflect on the trust that he breached, and the lives that he has affected, and return from prison a rehabilitated man.

‘I would also take this opportunity to urge anyone who suspects that their loved ones are being defrauded or stolen from to contact Kent Police so that we can catch offenders and safeguard the vulnerable.’

By Ed

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