A mobile phone store manager from Wigan is beginning a two-year jail sentence after stealing stock worth £185,000.
Michael Doyle, 44, had worked for mobile phone giant The Carphone Warehouse for more than 20 years and was a trusted member of staff.
But Doyle, of Long Lane, Hindley Green, who had pleaded guilty to theft from the chain’s store in Blackburn, devised a method of ripping off his long-time employers for this enormous sum.
Detectives say Doyle, between January and July last year, arranged for phone stock to be electronically transferred to other branches.
But instead of making the switch, the stock was not dispatched, enabling Doyle to pocket 345 phones.
Police say an internal investigation was conducted, after his bosses became suspicious, leading to Doyle’s arrest.
He was jailed at Preston Crown Court and may now also be facing a Proceeds of Crime Act hearing to see if all or some of his ill-gotten gains can be clawed back.
Speaking after the case, Det Con Lee Richardson, of Blackburn CID, said: “Doyle, after 20 years of working with Carphone Warehouse, used his position to abuse the trust of his employers.
“He stole thousands of pounds worth of stock, fixing computer systems for his own gain.
“It was only because of the due diligence of the company loss prevention officer in discovering the offences and reporting them to the police that prevented more phones being taken.”