Amazon factory worker sacked after stealing watches and phones worth thousands

·2-min read
Iulian Gonceariuc stole thousands of pounds of items from the Amazon warehouse at Symmetry Park. Inset, Gonceariuc (right) leaves court with his brother.
Iulian Gonceariuc stole thousands of pounds of items from the Amazon warehouse at Symmetry Park. Inset, Gonceariuc (right) leaves court with his brother.

AN AMAZON worker was sacked after he was caught red handed stealing thousands of pounds of watches and phones.

Iulian Gonceariuc stole almost £8,000 of high-value items while working at the firm’s Symmetry Park warehouse in Swindon.

He was caught in March opening a package containing a Samsung Galaxy A02s with a key, prosecutor Natalie Cheeseman told Swindon Magistrates’ Court on Wednesday.

A colleague caught him in the act and reported it, it had been caught on CCTV.

They then reviewed the footage and found that he had been placing a number of items, including another smartphone and a pair of headphones, into a bin that he would later collect.

Swindon Advertiser: Gonceariuc, right, and his brother leave court on Wednesday.
Swindon Advertiser: Gonceariuc, right, and his brother leave court on Wednesday.

Gonceariuc, right, and his brother leave court on Wednesday.

During a three week-period at Symmetry Park in March, the 25-year-old was caught stealing a number of items including phones, smart watches and an Xbox game, valued at £7,784.08.

He was confronted and confessed, and told police that “his intention would be to steal those items in order that he could then go on and sell them to random people”, Ms Cheeseman told the court.

“He said he was not very well off and just wanted to make some money.”

In one case, Gonceariuc, who at the time lived in Ermin Street, Stratton, was found to have taken Bluetooth earphones from a package and was using them to listen to music whilst working.

Swindon Advertiser: Gonceariuc and his brother embraced outside Swindon Magistrates' Court after the 25-year-old was given an 18-month community order.
Swindon Advertiser: Gonceariuc and his brother embraced outside Swindon Magistrates' Court after the 25-year-old was given an 18-month community order.

Gonceariuc and his brother embraced outside Swindon Magistrates' Court after the 25-year-old was given an 18-month community order.

“He stated he had picked items off of the shelf that were not on the screen, and I should state there is a screen in front of him when he is picking that states what needs to be picked.”

Ms Cheeseman went on to say that most of the items were recovered, and Amazon intended to sell them on at a reduced price.

She said there was “some degree of planning involved and there was some degree of trust breached”.

Mitigating, Emma Hillier told the court that Gonceariuc moved out of Swindon after losing his job and now lives on Old Market in Wisbech, Cambridgeshire, with his brother.

Swindon Advertiser: Symmetry Park in Swindon, where the Amazon warehouse is located.
Swindon Advertiser: Symmetry Park in Swindon, where the Amazon warehouse is located.

Symmetry Park in Swindon, where the Amazon warehouse is located.

She added that he, and his mother who lives in Moldova, were having “financial issues”, but they “have now been resolved” and this offending “is very much out of character for him”.

He pleaded guilty to one count of theft by employee.

Sentencing, chairman of the bench, Natalie O’Connell, said: “Because this was a series of thefts carried out over a sustained period of time, it was serious enough for us to set a community order.”

Gonceariuc was ordered to carry out 140 hours in the next 18 months, as well as paying £85 in costs and a £95 victim surcharge.

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