'Despicable' care home nurse Katiso Elliot Tlhabanelo stole thousands of pounds from 98-year-old resident at Sunrise Senior Living in Purley

Croydon Guardian: Sunrise Senior Living in Purley Sunrise Senior Living in Purley

A "despicable" nurse in an elderly care home spent £10,000 of residents' money after stealing their credit cards.

Katiso Elliot Tlhabanelo, of Brighton Road, South Croydon, racked up huge bills on cards owned by two victims, including a 98-year-old woman, at Sunrise Senior Living in Purley.

Police said the victims had been "ruthlessly targeted" for their vulnerability.

The 49-year-old nurse carried out several transactions, including purchases from sports shops and cash machine withdrawls, with the stolen cards.

Tlhabanelo was caught after the 98-year-old and her daughter noticed payments worth nearly £2,000 on a statement for a card she rarely used.

Police officers from the Purley Safer Neighbourhoods Team (SNT) obtained CCTV of the card being used at banks and shops, enabling mangers at the Russell Hill Road care home to identify Tlhabanelo in the footage.

He was arrested as he arrived to began his shift on February 26. Officers who searched him found a credit card belonging to the second victim in his wallet.

During police interview, Tlhabanelo admitted stealing the credit cards and defrauding residents out of the money.

He was charged with two counts of fraud and two counts of theft on pleaded guilty to both offences at Camberwell Green Magistrates' Court the next day.

A date for his sentencing, at Croydon Crown Court, has not yet been set.

Sergeant Nick Tooher, from the Purley SNT said: "Tlhabanelo used his position as a nurse in a care home for the elderly to take advantage of the very people he was supposed to be caring for.

"I’ve little doubt that had he not been caught, he would have gone on to steal from other residents."

Detective Constable Scott Barefoot, from Croydon police, who investigated the case, said: "This is a despicable crime whereby the most vulnerable people in our society have been ruthlessly targeted."

The Nursing and Midwifery Council have been informed of Tlhabanelo's conviction and is likely to bar him from working with the elderly or vulnerable.

A spokeswoman for the care home said: "The health and wellbeing of residents is always our number one priority. We were appalled by this behaviour, which is out of step with everything we stand for.

"As soon as this incident was reported, we took the appropriate action and informed the relevant authorities.

"We have been working closely with the police and co-operated fully with their investigation.

"We hope the appropriate justice is done when the sentencing takes place and we will do everything in our power to ensure nothing like this happens again."


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Comments (3)

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5:26pm Mon 10 Mar 14

charliewright says...

Absolute scumbag stealing of an elderly lady in the Sunrise 'care' 'nursing' home!
They should throw the book at her, and set an example. I bet this is rife in other homes in the borough.
Absolute scumbag stealing of an elderly lady in the Sunrise 'care' 'nursing' home! They should throw the book at her, and set an example. I bet this is rife in other homes in the borough. charliewright
  • Score: 3

7:15pm Tue 11 Mar 14

motomoto says...

This sort of thing goes on a lot more than people think......and it's not just money either......it's wedding and engagement rings too !
It's happened to my wife's grandmother back in 2001 in a residential care home in sidcup, the "so called carers" sneaked into her room late at night, held her down on the bed and stole her wedding and engagement rings from her fingers.......it was reported to the police but suprise suprise the nigerian carers got away with it because it was too dark to identify them plus they were all in denial !!!!
This sort of thing goes on a lot more than people think......and it's not just money either......it's wedding and engagement rings too ! It's happened to my wife's grandmother back in 2001 in a residential care home in sidcup, the "so called carers" sneaked into her room late at night, held her down on the bed and stole her wedding and engagement rings from her fingers.......it was reported to the police but suprise suprise the nigerian carers got away with it because it was too dark to identify them plus they were all in denial !!!! motomoto
  • Score: 3

5:00pm Thu 13 Mar 14

christhegoth says...

Pay peanuts, and all you'll attract is monkeys.

Cost-cutting helps no-one, bar the Shareholders of course.
Pay peanuts, and all you'll attract is monkeys. Cost-cutting helps no-one, bar the Shareholders of course. christhegoth
  • Score: -2

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