A "LONER" who stole nearly £2,000 from a disabled pensioner he claimed to be caring for has been jailed for six months.
David Bednarek had been a neighbour of 78-year-old Emily Drake for more than 10 years and would do her shopping and even take her down to the working men's club most nights.
But all the time Bednarek was pilfering money from her personal savings and in total stole £1,800, Bradford Crown Court heard.
Miss Drake was virtually blind and infirm and could do very little for herself.
The court heard yesterday that she trusted Bednarek implicitly and would ask him to withdraw money from her account using her cash card and her pin number.
Bednarek obliged, but each time he went to the cash machine he would also draw money out for himself.
Bednarek, 44, would return from the bank with Miss Drake's money and a receipt, but her eyesight was so bad she could not read them.
The offences only came to light when she asked a social worker to do the same thing for her and when she read Miss Drake the statement, Miss Drake knew there was a problem.
The bank released statements which showed that every time Bednarek had been to the bank, he had taken out sums for himself - ranging from between £100 and £300.
When he was interviewed by police, Bednarek, of Milford Court, Milford Street, Huddersfield, denied he had taken any money from his neighbour.
But at an earlier hearing he pleaded guilty to 14 counts of theft.
Gillian Batts, mitigating, told the court that her client was a "misfit" and a "loner", who was not in financial trouble and was at a loss to explain why he had stolen the money.
Miss Batts conceded that they were serious and mean offences, but urged the judge to impose a suspended sentence.
She said that the defendant had become friendly with the complainant after his mother died.
He had lived with his mother and spent most of his time caring for her.
But Judge Roger Scott was told that Bednarek had three previous convictions for theft and said that only an immediate custodial sentence was justified.
He said: "The fact is this is the fourth occasion and you will not get four chances.
"To me custody is inevitable.
"You totally and utterly betrayed her support and friendship by stealing from her on a regular basis for no other reason than for pure excitement."