Cambridge teenager loses fraud sentence appeal
A teenager who defrauded an elderly neighbour in Cambridge has failed in a bid to get her sentence cut.
Mahletchimi Ramadu, 53, and daughters Angela Davis, 27, and law student Jessica Mahathevan, 18, took £300,000 from Stanley Flack, 83.
They were sentenced for conspiracy to steal, which they denied, in December.
The Court of Appeal rejected a claim that Mahathevan's 18-month term in a young offenders' institution was "manifestly excessive".
She had been sentenced at Cambridge Crown Court along with Ramadu, who received five years in prison, and Davis, who received three years.
Mr Flack has Alzheimer's and thought Ramadu and Mahathevan, both of Stanley Road, and Davis, of Mortlock Avenue, were looking after him.
Mahathevan's lawyer, Mark Shelley, claimed she was a "delightful and pleasant young lady" who had done what her mother told her to do.
He said the conviction had already dealt a blow to her plans to become a lawyer.
Judge Peter Rook QC, sitting with Lord Justice Jackson and Mr Justice Irwin, said: "We accept that this appellant's life has been and will be affected significantly by the conviction.
"Her ambition to obtain employment in the professions is in doubt and her family home is likely to be confiscated to pay compensation.
"However... this was a wicked conspiracy to plunder the savings of an old and vulnerable man.
"The judge was entitled to take the view that it merited a significant immediate sentence of imprisonment."
Mahathevan, along with her mother and sister, befriended their elderly neighbour before withdrawing and transferring £274,000 from his savings, between December 2009 and January 2010.
Some of the money was spent on Mahathevan's education at Westminster University, the court heard.
Judge Rook said Mr Flack "had served his country, worked all his life and lived frugally" to build up the savings, which were plundered in a matter of weeks by the three women.