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Mother of five jailed for theft in Samoa

A mother of five from Vaitele-fouhas been jailed for 18 months for stealing more than $10,000 from her employer.Aliitasi Taibellania Ah Fook, 34, was sentenced by Supreme Court Justice Vui Clarence Nelson yesterday afternoon.“I have no doubt that she is a person of good character, a hard working mother but she made some very bad decisions,” Justice Vui said.Ah Fookworked for a local bakery. She was responsible for dealing with customers and handling the company’s money.“As such, she was given a position of trust by her employer,” said Justice Vui.On Wednesday 17 October, the General Manager of the Bakery gave Ah Fook $5,109 to pay for bakery supplies. Instead, Ah Fook “put it in her pocket and kept it for her own personal purposes.”On Thursday 25 October, the Manager again gave her $5,135 for the same reason. She used the money.On Monday 5 November, the company that supplies the bakery approached the Manager to ask for payment of previous supplies.It was then that Ah Fook owned up. She immediately apologised to the company for her actions.In Court, she pleaded guilty to two counts of theft as a servant.“This is another sad case of a young woman who felt that her only option to meet her family and other obligations was to steal from her employer.“What she stole was not a small fund but a significant fund.”Justice Vuidid not accept the claim by Ah Fook that she stole money because she was treated poorly by her employer.“Her option should have been to resign and find better employment.It was not an option for her to help herself to funds to pay for bakery supplies.”