Former radio personality gets six years in prison

Convicted fraudster Janice Samuel
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By Latrishka Thomas

[email protected]

Imprisonment for six years – that was the sentence given to former radio personality, Janice Samuel, who has been convicted of fraud.

Last month, 48-year-old Samuel admitted to five counts of fraud, and fourteen of obtaining money by virtue of a forged instrument.

Samuel, stole $107,119.27 from the plumbing firm H2One Limited, where she worked as an office assistant between March 15 and July 7, 2019.

In July 2019, after Samuel was convicted of a previous crime of embezzlement, her employer sent her home for a few days while reconsidering her employment.

While preparing payroll, he observed that insufficient funds were in the account, and decided to look into the matter.

He found that over a dozen cheques had been paid out.

The employer told the police that he’d never filled out any sums on those cheques, nor approved their payments, and his staff knew that his approval was required.

Samuel is said to have prepared the cheques and issued them to an associate of hers who was not affiliated with the company.

They were allegedly cashed at a gas station by the individual, but when questioned he said that he did not know that he was involved in a crime.

The mother of four corroborated the fact that her associate did not know that he was involved in anything nefarious. She said that she told him that she was owed money by her workplace, but wouldn’t have time to change the cheques herself.

The court heard yesterday that the victim, a director of the company which Samuel defrauded, wrote a victim impact statement explaining that Samuel’s crimes set them back significantly to the point where two loans had to be taken out to satisfy payroll and other financial obligations, resulting in even more hardship.

Samuel’s lawyer, Sherfield Bowen, pleaded with the Judge for a non-custodial sentence.

He said that, “Taking into consideration that the company is only in its third year, having lost such a considerable sum, imprisonment is not going to help them.”

Justice Williams responded saying: “In my view, there can be no other punishment but incarceration.”

He shared that throughout his time on the bench he has noticed that many persons do not pay the monies owed.

The Judge therefore began his sentencing with a prison term of eight years which was bumped up by one year due to aggravating factors.

A one-third discount was then applied for Samuel’s guilty plea, but a further one and a half years was added when the Judge considered that there were nineteen counts on the indictment.

The aforementioned addition was disputed by Bowen who felt that the Judge’s starting point already took into consideration the complete offense and the total amount stolen.

The Judge however disagreed and proceeded to subtract a further 18 months for the time the radio show contributor had already spent behind bars.

In the end, he winded up with a sentence of six years’ imprisonment.

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