A 91-year-old woman was betrayed by her great niece and great nephew as they stole more than £14,000 from her while she died of cancer.
In what police called “an appalling abuse of trust”, twins Jenna and Jon Dyer, 36, made multiple cash withdrawals from accounts belonging to their great aunt, Eva Weselby.
They stole money from her over a three-month period as she battled breast cancer.
Police said Ms Weselby used her final words before she died to speak of her anger and sadness after being betrayed by close members of her family.
Her family said Ms Weselby was left “heartbroken” when she found out the pair had stolen from her. She died in October 2019 before the twins were brought before the courts.
Marion Goldfeather, the twins’ mother, said: “She would do anything for her family and she lived for her family and the family, including Jenna and Jon, knew this.
“They knew Auntie Eva would do anything she could for anyone, yet they tricked her and manipulated her, stealing her money that she worked hard for all her life.
Ms Weselby, who had never been in debt before, was later issued a court summons for an unpaid bill.
At Nottingham Crown Court on Monday, the pair were both sentenced to prison after pleading guilty to fraud by false representation.
Jenna, from Middledale Road, Carlton, was jailed for two years, while Jon, from Westdale Lane East, Carlton, was sentenced to two years and eight months.
Their fraudulent activities were noticed after the Co-operative Bank contacted Ms Weselby to alert her of suspicious activity on her account.
Nottinghamshire Police said records from one account showed the maximum amount of £250 was withdrawn daily from different locations over a four-week period.
On 29 August 2019, Jenna used one card to withdraw £250 as her mother and her great aunt sat waiting for her in a car.
Police said she is said to have “twirled on the spot” as she returned with the money.
Cash was also taken from their great aunt’s post office account from which she would regularly make withdrawals to pay for her bills and outgoings.
The court heard that from 13 June 2019, one account’s balance dwindled from more than £5,000 to just £300 in three-and-a-half months.
Ms Weselby, unaware of the previous deception, had made Jenna a “permanent agent” on the account, meaning she was given her own card.
More than £14,000 was stolen from Ms Weselby by fraudulent use of her bank cards between 13 June 2019 and 30 September 2019.
Further suspicions were raised among family members when the twins sent a photo of their great aunt asleep in a chair.
Marion Goldfeather said: “Auntie Eva died just over six weeks after finding out that my daughter Jenna had stolen thousands of pounds from her and later found out that my son Jon was also involved.
“Our family have all been so deeply affected by Jenna and Jon’s callous crime.
“Auntie Eva was 91 years old, the matriarch of the family, the last of a past generation and she had been through so much.
“On finding out what Jenna had done she was inconsolable, felt betrayed, hurt and was heartbroken.
“Despite being diagnosed with breast cancer she still had a zest for life and had so much to keep fighting for and she did – we were so proud of her.
“When the police investigation started and it came to light what had happened, Auntie Eva lost her fighting spirit. It changed her so much, she was giving up on life, it was clear for the family to see. This broke her.”
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