Bugaboo! EBay trader in court for pram peddling

PUBLISHED: 11:47 24 September 2007 | UPDATED: 12:52 04 May 2010

SOHAM mother, Simone Marley, stole more than £4,000 from vulnerable pregnant women trading on the EBay internet site. She used her young son s bank account to cash cheques from the first-time mothers, who ordered high quality prams for their new babies.

SOHAM mother, Simone Marley, stole more than £4,000 from "vulnerable" pregnant women trading on the EBay internet site.

She used her young son's bank account to cash cheques from the first-time mothers, who ordered high quality prams for their new babies.

But Marley, who ran her company Quality Flashy Stuff from her home at The Causeway, never delivered the goods.

Instead she spent the money and when one of her 12 customers wrote to enquire about her order she refused to accept the letter, Ely magistrates were told on Thursday.

The court heard that Marley, 34, who now lives at Scaltback Close, Newmarket, traded on the internet shopping site through her ex- partner's account.

She advertised highly sought after Bugaboo Gekko Prams from a company called Two Left Feet on the on-line shopping website and customers placed their orders by email.

Marley told police the business was run by a "drop shipping" method whereby she received money for handling transactions between the company and the customer.

Customers' cheques were sent to Marley's Soham home and paid into her son's account, on which she was named as trustee. But the goods, totalling £4,363, were never shipped.

"Her victims were all vulnerable, pregnant women who had been shopping for their newborns," said Yetunde Fawehinmi, prosecuting. "One was a grandmother who ordered a pram for her grandchild and had to go and buy another one.

"One customer became anxious after sending £490 and sent seven email messages asking why she hadn't received her order. The seventh message was returned to her saying the account had been closed."

Customers lost amounts ranging from £126 to £790 in a period of just over a month from June to August last year, the court was told.

Mitigating Mary Cleaver told the court that Marley, who admitted 12 charges of theft, had been a successful EBay trader in the past with 98 per cent positive feedback.

But, after breaking up with her partner, she and her two children had to "start again" finding and building up a home whilst living on income support.

"Money came in and Mrs Marley was in a desperate situation and used the money to pay the rent and the bills and feed her family," she said. "She didn't spend it on luxuries for herself. She is deeply ashamed of what she has done."

The case was adjourned until October 11 for a pre-sentence report and Marley was granted unconditional bail.

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