Jail for society boss who raided accounts of family and friends

A BUILDING society manager who plundered her own husband and family’s accounts of more than £300,000 to pay off debts has been jailed for four years.

Denise Salter

Mother-of-two Denise Salter worked her way up from part-time clerk to become manager of the Sheffield branch of the Yorkshire Building Society.

She used her financial know-how to withdraw funds over 17 years and, when arrested by police, confessed: “I’m a thief and a liar.”

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Her family cottage in Pilley, near Barnsley, has been put up for sale and her husband Charles Salter, himself a victim, is now faced with paying off a mortgage he didn’t know he had.

Sheffield Crown Court heard 57-year-old Salter had stolen the money to pay off debts run up by her two sons and cover household expenditure and bills.

When arrested, Salter told police she had been helping her sons with their cash problems.

She admitted six offences of theft, two of fraud, one each of false accounting and making a false instrument and asked for three further theft matters from December 1995 to July 2012 to be considered.

Laura Marshall, prosecuting, said Salter’s offending came to light when lifelong friend Joan Shepherd discovered her investment account had been closed and all the money withdrawn.

Each staff member has a unique access number and it was traced to Salter. Other accounts were checked and further anomalies were found.

“Each of the accounts affected related to close family or friends of the defendant,” said Miss Marshall.

“There was a deliberate targeting of these accounts. She felt she was able to control the accounts because of the relationship she had with the complainants.”

In total Salter stole £325,411 from accounts including her husband’s ISA.

Sentencing her yesterday, judge Paul Watson said: “You will not be able to look members of your family in the eye again.”