Distillery worker stole tens of thousands of pounds to fuel gambling addiction

A distiller work stole tens of thousands of pounds from the company he was working for to pay for his gambling addiction – eventually sending the business under

Nottinghamshire Police said Thomas Masters (35) from Fairway, in Keyworth, a few miles south of Nottingham, stole almost £143,000 from the new business that he had been hired to help out at.

Police said he had been headhunted by the gin distillery for his expertise in the field and set out plans to create a gin school with a bar and restaurant in Nottingham city centre.

The force said that he started to dip into company funds after being entrusted with its business accounts.

In a statement the police said he stole the money between August 2018 and April 2019, with the heavy losses caused resulting in the business folding.

Masters previously pleaded guilty to fraud and on Wednesday, March 16, was jailed for two-and-a-half years at Nottingham Crown Court.

Detective Constable Jason Jenkins, of Nottinghamshire Police, said: “Masters took thousands of pounds that didn’t belong to him and gambled it all away.

“After gaining the trust of the company that hired him, Masters manipulated his position as a director to bring the business to its knees, with his actions sadly resulting in the company ceasing to exist.

“As this case shows, fraud can have a devastating impact on its victims and can leave people at risk of having their livelihoods destroyed.

“We are pleased to see that justice has been served in this case and we hope that the result sends out a strong message that Nottinghamshire Police will never tolerate this kind of offending.”

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Tom PegdenLeicester Mercury business editor