Woman sentenced to 12 months’ imprisonment over fraudulent card payments

09/09/2013

Claire Hider, from Portsmouth was sentenced to 12 months' imprisonment after pleading guilty 32 offences of fraud on Monday 9 September, 2013.

Following the sentencing, Lindsay Pennell, Senior Crown Prosecutor for the Crown Prosecution Service said: "Claire Hider purchased goods and services over the internet using credit card numbers she had acquired. It was not until the credit card holder received their statement and saw suspicious transactions on their account that the credit card company became aware and reclaimed the money from the companies or businesses that had provided the goods or services.

"Hampshire Constabulary became aware of the fraud when Radio Taxis in Fareham made a complaint following a booking for a taxi run from an address in Sultan Road to Gatwick airport on 28 June 2012 and a return for the following week. The taxi was booked to someone called Claire, who had made the booking by credit card payment. The transaction was then authorised and Radio Taxis provided the service. However, a few weeks later the taxi firm received a chargeback notification from the credit card company that the cardholder had reported the transaction as fraudulent.

"Around about the same time, similar complaints were received by the police from other companies that had also been victims of fraudulent credit card transactions and lost money as a result of charge backs. All these companies reported that the delivery address used was an address in Sultan Road where Claire Hider resides with her partner Darren OBrien.

"Following a thorough investigation, Claire Hider was arrested and charged with several counts of fraud to which she pleaded guilty. Her partner, Darren OBrien pleaded guilty to using criminal property and her sister, Emma Hider, has also pleaded guilty to four offences of fraud in respect of purchases she made.

"Claire Hider was sentenced to 12 months imprisonment on Monday 9 September at Portsmouth Crown Court , Darren OBrien was sentenced to a community order and Emma Hider received a six month suspended sentence."

 Notes:

Claire  Hider pleaded guilty to 20 offences of fraud with a total estimated value in the region of £40,000. The value of goods/ services actually obtained by Ms Hider through successful transactions was in the region of £18,000.

In addition her partner, Mr OBrien pleaded guilty to using criminal property which represents the benefit he received of flights and hotel accommodation in Spain paid for by Ms Hider using someone elses credit card number.

Having been charged Ms Hider continued to commit further offences of fraud whilst on bail. As a result she was charged with, and has pleaded guilty to, a further 12 offences with an estimated value of £32,000.  Her sister, Emma Hider, pleaded guilty to four offences of fraud in respect of purchases she made.