A crooked cleaner who stole money from an eight-year-old boy has been jailed after being caught wearing her employer’s stolen jewellery on Facebook.
Maxine Ferran, 47, was jailed for 18 months after stealing up to £7,000 worth of valuables including Versace handbags, mobile phones, video games and cash – including her employer’s young son’s savings from his bedroom.
She also stole “irreplaceable” family heirlooms including a 2,000-year-old coin her victim’s great-grandfather had carried throughout the First World War – which she returned on the day of her sentencing.
Ferran was caught after Cliff and Paris Bradley, whose home cleaned for almost two years, began to suspect she behind things going missing from their four-bedroom village home near Warwick.
Mr Bradley then spotted a photo on Ferran’s Facebook profile in which she was a missing pair of his wife’s earrings.
He contacted jewellers in the area with details of other missing items and found out that Ferran had been trying to sell a mounted Alexander the Great coin dating back to around 200BC, worn as a fob by his great-grandfather in the First World War.
Ferran, of Bartley Green, Birmingham, was handed an 18-month prison sentence at Warwick Crown Court after being convicted of stealing from the Bradleys by Warwickshire magistrates.
When she was arrested, she denied being responsible for any thefts from the couple, which she maintained during her trial and when she was first been due to be sentenced, Ferran claimed she had nothing to do with taking the treasured heirlooms.
But at the resumed hearing she turned up with the coin and cufflinks, which were handed back to Mr Bradley.
Judge Sylvia de Bertodano gave her credit for returning the items, but said: “When people let others into their homes to do work for them, it places a significant degree of trust in them.
“You were using this employment to steal from this family.”
Simon Hunka, defending, said: “There has been a significant degree of distress in having those items go missing, but a considerable relief to have them returned.
“It is terrible offending. I can’t say anything more about it than that.
“It’s an abuse of trust by an individual who has access to every nook and cranny in their home.”
He said Ferran had been married and had two children, but her husband had died five years ago, leaving her unable to pay the mortgage, and she and her son, then 15, had to move in with her police officer daughter.
She now has rented accommodation where she lives with her son, who was a bright student but quit his course and, now 20, suffers from agoraphobia and panic attacks.
(Top picture: Getty)