Woman jailed for stealing flowers from Liverpool crematorium

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Media captionCCTV, recently installed at Springwood crematorium, caught the pair

A woman has been jailed for stealing flowers from a Liverpool crematorium to then sell on for profit.

Marion Hill and her sister were caught on CCTV taking tributes carrying the words 'Mum' and 'Nan' from Springwood crematorium, Allerton on 7 May.

Wreaths were later found at Hill's house, along with blank condolence cards and "wreath-making accessories".

Hill was jailed for 10 weeks at Liverpool Magistrates' Court. Lyndsay Millett was given a suspended sentence.

Hill, 42, who has previous convictions for fraud and theft and Ms Millett, 37, claimed they had taken the wreaths to put on their own mother's grave.

But the prosecution argued the items found at Hill's home showed involvement in a business in taking wreaths and selling them on.

The court heard the crematorium had set up CCTV after several other sets of flowers went missing.

Both women were subsequently sacked from their jobs Ms Millett was evicted from her home when her landlord found out what she had done, the court heard.

'Distaste and anger'

District Judge Richard Clancy said the pair had committed a "shameful act".

Andrew Hodgson, prosecuting, said: "I would describe this as a despicable crime, they were preying on the misery of people who were already suffering due to the bereavement of their loved ones.

"It is a crime which has caused a lot of distaste and anger in the wider community."

He added that Ms Millett had avoided a jail term "by the skin of her teeth" as "she had no previous convictions and she had childcare responsibilities".

Leanne Kennedy, defending, said the pair were "ashamed and remorseful".

The wreaths captured on CCTV being stolen had been laid for the funeral of Chris Jennat's mother.

He said: "I don't think you can stoop any lower. It's not nice - you go to move the flowers from the crematorium to the grave, and they are not there.

"I had to follow it up for my mum's sake, and they have been brought to justice now. Hopefully it won't happen again."

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