Maid jailed for stealing over $50,000 worth of items from employer

Siti Nur Sopiyati admitting to theft of several luxury items, including a Chopard watch worth $35,000 and an Hermes wallet worth $10,000.
Siti Nur Sopiyati admitting to theft of several luxury items, including a Chopard watch worth $35,000 and an Hermes wallet worth $10,000. ST GRAPHIC

SINGAPORE - An Indonesian maid stole a Chopard ladies watch worth $35,000, a Celine snakeskin handbag that cost $7,500 and a pink Hermes crocodile skin wallet worth $10,000 from her businesswoman employer - and thought she had got away with it.

Then, 11 months later, she posted pictures of herself flaunting the stolen items on Instagram while working for another employer in Singapore. 

But the previous employer, Madam Lisa Lee, learnt about this from her sister and informed the police.

Siti Nur Sopiyati, 32, was arrested and on Monday (Aug 7) she was sentenced to 12 months’ jail after admitting to the theft. Apart from the watch, the handbag and the wallet, she had also stolen a black T-shirt worth $150 and a gold ring with diamonds worth $1,800 gold ring from the Nassim Hill apartment of Madam Lee, 32, some time in January last year.

Prosecution officer Assistant Superintendent Kevin Lee Ming Woei said that Siti, who worked for Madam Lee from 2013 to March 2016, was cleaning the master bedroom when she stole the five items from the businesswoman’s cupboard. Together they were worth $54,450.

She hid them inside her bedroom before asking another Indonesian woman to help her send them back to her home country. 

When Madam Lee discovered that some of her valuables were missing in March 2016, her husband called the police. He suspected that either Siti or another Indonesian domestic worker, who was also working in the household, had stolen the jewellery. 

But nothing incriminating was found on either of them and Madam Lee did not wish to pursue the matter further, so both domestic workers were sent back to their agent and eventually returned to Indonesia.

In May last year, Siti returned to work for another household. She brought along the items that she had stolen from Madam Lee because she wanted to use them, said ASP Lee. 

Some time in November that year, she posted pictures of herself wearing the stolen items on her Instagram page. Madam Lee’s sister spotted these pictures. All the stolen items have since been recovered. 

Siti’s sentence was backdated to July 25. She could have been jailed for up to seven years and fined for theft as a servant.