A brazen fraudster who spun a web of lies involving global oil and gas companies in Panama, Kuwait, UAE and Australia has been convicted.
Dawn Parker (nee Staples) concocted an elaborate scam, involving the falsification of emails and creation of false invoices, billing a total of £115,159 from 8️⃣ multinational companies.
The shameless 37-year-old, who has previously been jailed for other fraud offences, managed to convince investors to back a new recruitment company called Oil Recruitment Solutions by lying about her extensive skills and contacts in the sector.
Convinced she was a major player in the industry; investors supplied her with IT equipment, an office on Collingwood Street in Newcastle and agreed to pay a salary of £29,035.
Over a 12 month period from October 2014, Parker ran the company generating invoices running into hundreds of thousands of pounds through an elaborate method of altering and sending emails, often using the details of engineers she had encountered in a previous role.
Investors were thrilled with her initial progress but it wasn’t until Parker went on maternity leave in August 2015 to have her second child they began to suspect foul play.
Following confusing email trails and chasing companies for payment proved a fruitless exercise and when no cash materialised, Oil Recruitment Solutions turned to police for help.
Following a lengthy investigation which sourced statements from companies in Kuwait, Australia and Panama, Parker was brought in for questioning and later charged.
Parker, of Gaskell Avenue, South Shields previously appeared at North Tyneside Magistrates’ where she admitted eight counts of fraud by abuse of position.
And on Thursday (May 28) she was sentenced at Newcastle Crown Court to 24 months imprisonment, suspended for 24 months.
Following the hearing, Detective Constable Sarah Robson, the investigating officer said: “Parker presented as a confident and capable employee who clearly knew the recruitment business and the oil and gas sector very well.
“Her dishonest actions were always going to unravel; it was only a matter of time. Parker is manipulative and callous in her approach to making money and has not shown any remorse for those she defrauded who regarded her as not only an employee, but a friend.
“I hope this case serves as a warning to anyone thinking they can get away with scamming people and companies out of money – you will be caught and you will be prosecuted.
“Hopefully this also serves as an opportunity for Parker to amend her ways and encourages her to get her life back on the right track and to stop offending.”
📱 If you have been a victim of fraud, please contact Action Fraud by calling 0300 123 2040.
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