Woman jailed for conning her friend into giving up her job for a dream post that never existed

|News, Fraud and economic crime

A woman has been jailed for conning her friend into giving up her job to take up a dream post that never existed.

Helen Dove
Helen Dove

Helen Dove, 31,  of Prescot Road in St Helens, befriended Kimberley McDonnell at a riding school in Rainford on Merseyside in January 2017.

Ms McDonnell confided that she had always wanted to work in child safeguarding. Ms Dove then began an elaborate fraud to pretend she'd secured a post for her.

Ms Dove pretended that she worked as an adoption officer in Warrington Council and said she would get Ms McDonnell a job there as a counsellor.

She faked texts, emails and letters, doctored bank statements, and sent Ms McDonnell forged contracts of employment to make her believe she had a job. It was all a con.

Fake offer of employment
Fake offer of employment with fake signatory

On the back of promises made by Helen Dove, Ms McDonnell gave up her own job and then began a seven month wait to start in a post that never existed in the first place.

Ms Dove advised Ms McDonnell to turn down offers of other jobs as this would delay her ability to start in the post that Ms Dove had dreamed up.

Fake terms and conditions
Fake terms and conditions by Helen Dove in post that she never had

In the end, Ms McDonnell was left trying to borrow money from friends and relatives to stay afloat and even faced the prospect of losing her home.

The court estimated she had lost around £50,000 due to the fraud.

Today (29 January 2020) at Liverpool Crown Court Helen Dove was sentenced to two years and eight months in prison for two counts of fraud.

Victoria Colvin of Mersey Cheshire Crown Prosecution Service said: "The reason why Ms Dove chose to do any of this is still a mystery. She made no financial gain from it.

“She saw how her lies had made her friend become desperate and yet she did nothing to help her. She simply made it worse.

"She denied her wrongdoing until the start of the trial and had to be arrested on warrant to appear before the court. Finally she pleaded guilty to two counts of fraud.

"The Crown Prosecution Service would like to thank Kimberley McDonnell for her courage in helping us to bring this fraudster to justice and we hope that the successful end to this case helps Ms McDonnell move on with her life.”

Further reading