A WOMAN has admitted blowing £43,000 that she stole from her mother who was living in a care home at the time.
Cassie Stubbs, 40, pleaded guilty at Chester Crown Court to stealing from her mother Rosita Stubbs.
Focus Features Cassie Stubbs pleaded guilty at Chester Crown Court
A further £40 000 was missing from her accounts, in cash transactions.
Rosita’s three accounts had been reduced to balances of 87p, 18p and 11p.
Rosita’s other two children, Victoria, 26, and her brother, Chris, 31, have now been saddled with a huge debt – and say they will never forgive Cassie’s cruel betrayal.
Victoria said: “Cassie and I were so close and I just can’t believe what she has done to our mother.
“Ours was an unbreakable bond – or so I thought.”
Focus Features Rosita Stubbs had her bank accounts drained by her own daughter, Cassie
But the relationship hit trouble when Cassie began splurging cash on a convertible car, new furniture and designer clothes – whilst pleading poverty to her family.
Victoria added: “Cassie was spending so much money yet she’d get loans and food parcels off relatives.
“She then engineered an argument with us so it would leave her free to plunder mum’s accounts without having to explain herself.
“After mum died, we met up with Cassie to discuss the funeral, and she lied brazenly to us about mum’s finances, pretending that most of her money had gone on care fees, knowing full well that she had spent the lot on herself. The betrayal was breath-taking.”
Focus Features Victoria and Chris have now been left with huge debts due to their sister
And afterwards, Victoria and Chris were not allowed to plan their mother’s funeral or see her accounts – but did not know why.
Victoria says: “It was baffling and very upsetting. Mum’s body lay in the morgue for five weeks whilst the police investigated Cassie. But of course, they couldn’t tell us, because we were under suspicion too."
As little children, Chris, Victoria and Cassie spent time apart as their mum suffered with post-natal depression and was later diagnosed with schizophrenia.
Focus Features Victoria said she used to idolise her older sister Cassie
Victoria said: “I had a different dad to Chris and Cassie, but our dads made sure we stayed in touch with each other, and we got on well. We visited mum in hospital and she’d write to us.
“She was a lovely lady, always so gentle, and with very simple tastes. It broke her heart that she wasn’t well enough to look after us full-time.
“As a child, I idolised Cassie. I had step-siblings on my dad’s side too, but Cassie was the one I really loved. She’d pick me up from school and take me out for tea. She would buy me little presents.”
Victoria said: “We were all incredibly close. Because our childhoods had been a bit chaotic, it made us so determined to have a happy, settled life for our own kids. Cassie was the eldest. So she was the cement that glued us all together.
“We had our babies together, and we joined the same toddler clubs and coffee mornings.
“We would visit mum, either in hospital or in supported accommodation. Cassie naturally took charge of her money, and was next of kin, because she was eldest.
Focus Features Victoria claimed Cassie said she had no money but still bought designer outfits
“Mum liked a bag of sweets and a packet of cafe crème cigars each week and that was all, so she didn’t spend much money at all.
But five years ago, cracks began to show.
Victoria said: “Cassie began complaining that she had no money. We’d go for coffee and yet she would complain she couldn’t afford to buy herself a drink.
“But at the same time, she was buying herself lots of luxuries. She bought a convertible car, a leather sofa and a new table and chairs.
“She had designer clothes and she was out partying every weekend.
“It was ridiculous. She was living in mum’s old house – totally rent free – and still insisted she was skint and was asking relatives for money. Chris is very kind-hearted, and he even sent her food parcels.
“Cassie then started stirring trouble between the three of us; she would slag Chris off to me behind his back, and then slag me off to Chris. I actually heard her, on hands-free, talking about me.
“She was very manipulative. In the end, she banned us from her house. I tried taking Easter eggs round for the kids and she wouldn’t let me in.
Focus Features Mum Rosita was said to have saved obsessively
“Looking back, we think she planned the whole fall-out so that she could steal the money without having to explain herself to us. The police thought so too.
“After we stopped speaking, Cassie began visiting mum more and more. But we never suspected a thing. Despite our differences, we would never have dreamed she would stoop so low.
“One time we visited, mum told us she’d had no cigars because Cassie had lost her bank card. That concerned me, and so I actually spoke to the care home to ask them to make sure Cassie returned the card.
In September 2017, Rosita died, aged 68, from heart failure.
Chris and Victoria then came up against a wall of silence from the care home, who refused to give them access to Rosita’s will or her financial position.
Victoria says: “We had absolutely no idea what was going on, and Cassie seemed as mystified as us. Mum’s body lay in the morgue for five weeks whilst it was investigated – but we had no idea why.
“We later discovered that we were all under investigation, and so the police couldn’t share any information with us.
“After the police told us about the theft, we continued pretending to Cassie that we knew nothing. It was very hard, because I had nothing but contempt for her.”
Six weeks after their mother’s death, Cassie was charged with the theft of £43000.
Double that figure was missing from Rosita’s accounts, in cash transactions, but it was impossible to prove.
Cassie Stubbs appeared before Chester Crown Court and admitted stealing £43 000 from her mother.
Stubbs was handed an 18-month jail term, suspended for two years. She was also given a 12-month community order with a rehabilitation programme, a three-month curfew and ordered to do 120 hours of community service.
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