A New Zealand teenager has narrowly avoided deportation after she stole $6000 worth of jewellery from her casual job and tried to pawn it off online.
Grace Olivia Vlaanderen was casually employed at Pandora at Sunshine Plaza, on Queensland’s Sunshine Coast, when she pocketed a haul of expensive rings and bracelets.
The 19-year-old Kiwi-national stole the jewellery over several months between November 2017 and January this year, before attempting to sell the goods on Facebook, the Sunshine Coast Daily reports.
The manager of Pandora Sunshine Plaza grew suspicious when a customer inquired about 15 gold rings she had seen advertised online and a stock-take revealed the same items were missing from the store.
When police searched Ms Vlaanderen’s home they found the gold rings alongside four silver rings and two bracelets.
The teenager had her sister – who was unaware of the theft – post the items for sale on Facebook.
Ms Vlaanderen pleaded guilty to stealing by clerks and servants and attempted fraud at the Maroochydore Magistrates Court on Friday.
Her lawyer argued his client suffered from ‘depression issues’ and stole the goods because she was struggling to pay her bills.
Ms Vlaanderen migrated to Australia from her home in Ohaupo, New Zealand, in 2013 and does not have access to Centrelink payments.
Magistrate Haydn Stjernqvist described the offences as ‘very serious’ and warned Ms Vlaanderen she was ‘already halfway across the Tasman’.
The court also heard Ms Vlaanderen has since found steady employment as a waitress and barista at a local cafe after she resigned from Pandora.
She was sentenced to 15 months probation with no conviction recorded.