A COMPANY boss has said the firm has not let the fact its former administration assistant fleeced it of £780,000 hold it back.

Preston Crown Court heard how 51-year-old Kathryn Jones had taken £600,000 for herself from MGS Technical Plastics Ltd, Darwen, between January 2011 and November 2016, leaving the company in dire straits.

The company also had to pay £100,000 in professional fees as Jones’ offending only came to light after discrepancies were identified by accountants. That led to an audit where it was revealed Jones transferred large sums of money to her bank.

Judge Robert Altham concluded Jones, who is now going through bankruptcy proceedings, benefited from her crime to the tune of £644,000 but now only had realisable assets of £1.

Jones was jailed for 28 months in August 2018 after pleading guilty to two charges of theft.

Speaking after the conclusion of the proceeds of crime hearing, MGS managing director John Sturgess said: “Kathy Jones has to live with what she did to hard-working colleagues who were only ever kind to her.

“The company is doing well and we’ve not let it hold us back.”