Maid jailed for stealing over $32k from employer to build house in hometown of Philippines

SINGAPORE - To fulfil her personal ambitions of building a house in the Philippines, a foreign domestic helper stole over $32,000 from her employer over a period of five years.

Delos Reyes Anabelle Llasos, 47, was sentenced to a year's jail on Friday (Aug 6) after pleading guilty to three counts of criminal breach of trust.

The court heard that Llasos began working for a 52-year-old man and his wife some time in 2010.

They entrusted her with an ATM card and its personal identification number (PIN) so she could help them purchase items or withdraw cash.

She abused their trust, however, and unlawfully withdrew money on multiple occasions to support her building project back home.

Court documents show that Llasos typically withdrew $200 or $300 each time she visited the ATM. She did this a few times each month, between June 2015 and April last year.

She then remitted the stolen sums totalling $32,080 to the Philippines.

Her employer realised that money was missing from the bank account in May last year and called the police.

In seeking at least a year's jail for Llasos, Deputy Public Prosecutor Kang Jia Hui said Llasos did not commit the crime out of difficult circumstances but personal greed.

She added that the total sum stolen was "fairly significant" and that there was a sustained period of offending.

In mitigation, Llasos told the court that she was remorseful for what she had done and hopes the couple can "find forgiveness in their hearts".

"Your honour, I promise I won't do this again. I am pleading for leniency and I wish to go back home as soon as possible," she said.

Llasos has since made restitution of $3,000 to her employer. The court heard that her employer is not seeking further compensation.

Llasos could have been jailed for up to 15 years and fined for each count of criminal breach of trust.

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