Woman robbed pensioner with dementia after spotting her with cash at shop

Nicola Seery, 36, preyed on Mary Ann Mullaney, 75, in Glasgow's Anniesland in 2020.

Nicola Seery robbed pensioner with dementia after spotting her with cash at Anniesland shop SNS Group
Nicola Seery preyed on Mary Ann Mullaney in Glasgow's Anniesland on 2020.

A woman stole £5000 from a vulnerable pensioner with dementia.

Nicola Seery, 36, preyed on Mary Ann Mullaney, 75, in Glasgow’s Anniesland on January 4, 2020.

The victim had earlier given Seery £20 at a supermarket check-out from a thick envelope containing the cash.

Seery took Ms Mullaney back to her home before swiping the money as the victim went to the toilet.

Seery, of the city’s Knightswood, pled guilty at Glasgow Sheriff Court to the single charge of theft.

The court heard that Ms Mullaney had been suffering from dementia at the time of the offence.

She required regular support from her family and friends on a daily basis.

It was heard that a witness stated that her condition was so bad, she believed that ATMs gave her “free money.”

She carried the cash believed to be four inches thick in the weeks leading up the offence in the envelope.

The victim attended an Iceland supermarket and she gave money to fellow shoppers from the envelope.

Ms Mullaney paid for her own items when Seery was positioned behind her in the queue.

She accepted £20 from the victim and they later engaged in conversation outside the supermarket for 20 minutes.

Prosecutor Robbie McDougall said: “Seery walked Ms Mullaney from the store locked arm in arm as she offered to walk her home.

“She asked Ms Mullaney to come inside which she allowed.

“Ms Mullaney excused herself to go to the bathroom and left Seery alone with the handbag containing the envelope.”

Miss Mullaney noticed that Seery was leaving her property when she came out of the bathroom and said: “I will see you later.”

She noticed 20 minutes later that the cash was missing and contacted her family to tell them what happened.

CCTV was used to identify Seery and she was traced to her home where she was arrested.

She told officers: “I didn’t do it.”

It was revealed there was no recovery of the money.

Marc Waters, defending, told the court that Seery had taken the cash to cover the gap following problems with her benefits at the time.

The lawyer added: “By her own description, her behaviour was disgraceful and opportunistic – it was a deliberate action by her.”

“She acknowledges the seriousness of the offence and the impact on the victim but she was unaware of her medical condition at the time.”

Sheriff Jonathan Guy labelled the crime as a “particularly nasty offence on a vulnerable woman.”

Seery was ordered to pay the victim £2000 in compensation and was tagged for 163 days keeping her indoors between 7pm and 7am.

She was also put under supervision for two years.