A boss who weighed 31 stones stole from a building supplies firm so his wife would have some cash if he died as a result of gastric bypass surgery.
Manager Gary Woodhams (41) stole a total of nearly £7,000 from two Saint-Gobain outlets – Gibbs and Dandy in Gillingham and Jewson at Pinchbeck.
Woodhams, formerly of Station Road, Moulton, and now of Everard Road, Tongue End, handed himself in to police when a banking discrepancy was discovered at the Gillingham firm.
Solicitor Beris Brickles, mitigating, said: “He didn’t want any of the other employees to be placed under suspicion.”
Mr Brickles outlined how Woodhams and his wife were plunged into a spiral of debt following the failure of her financial consultancy business and now owe £250,000.
He said the money was taken in small amounts – £50 one day, £70 another – and it was always his intention to repay it at some time in the future.
Mr Brickles said Woodhams had no previous convictions and “it’s a very sad day for him that he’s been brought to this position”.
Presiding magistrate Richard Spinks told Woodhams: “We have listened very carefully to your advocate but you were the company manager in a high position of trust and you betrayed that trust twice.
“We don’t think our powers of sentencing are sufficient and this matter will be sent to the crown court for sentence.”
Woodhams pleaded guilty to theft of £5,818.13 in Gillingham from Saint Gobain between November 5 2012 and June 26 2013 and theft of £1,118.34 at Pinchbeck between September 19-27 2013.
Jim Clare, prosecuting, said Woodhams handed himself in at the police station in October and admitted stealing money from his employer.
Woodhams told police he had been due to go into hospital in February, didn’t think he was going to survive that surgery and wanted his wife to have some money should he die.