A WOMAN has admitted stealing money stored on behalf of an elderly relative of her husband.

Georgina Jayne Appleby today (June 19) admitted the theft of £27,000 from a larger amount that she and husband Peter were safe-keeping for a 79-year-old man.

She appeared with her husband at Durham Crown Court both accused of stealing money between December 1, 2012, and February 7 this year.

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Both pleaded ‘not guilty’, but Georgina Appleby admitted a second charge of theft, on the basis the amount taken was about £27,000.

Laurie Scott, prosecuting, told the court: “That is an acceptable resolution to proceedings and so ‘no evidence’ can be offered to the first count.”

Recorder Jonathan Carroll, therefore, returned a formal ‘not guilty’ verdict to the charge relating to 48-year-old Mr Appleby, of High Street, Carrville, near Durham.

The Recorder told him: “That’s the end of the matter for you. You’re free to leave the court.”

But the case against 38-year-old Georgina Appleby, of Hawthorn Road, Carrville, was adjourned for a month to allow for the preparation of a background report on her by the Probation Service.

He granted her bail pending sentence on condition that she does not contact or attempt to contact the victim.

But he told her: “You have now pleaded ‘guilty’ to the theft of £27,000.

“Clearly that’s a substantial sum and a serious matter.

“In adjourning for that report you should not take it as any indication whatsoever as to what the sentence will be.

“All sentencing options, up to and including a custodial sentence, will be considered.”

She was bailed to return to the court for sentence on Friday, July 18.