A MAN who stole £45,000 worth of goods while working at Kendal’s Currys PC World has been told to surrender ill-gotten gains totalling more than £14,000.

Joshua Nicholson, 25, was given an immediate 18-month jail term in August last year for a stealing spree carried out while employed at the company’s town store.

Carlisle Crown Court was told how Nicholson, a trusted account manager, exploited a loophole in the firm’s system to create fake invoices. This allowed him to pinch electrical items including iPhones, computers and televisions over the course of several weeks around the turn of 2019.

Nicholson was brought to justice after a store manager‘s suspicions led to police discovering an “Aladdin’s cave of technology” at his home.

It was discovered he had stolen 100 separate items with a total value of £45,366.58, much of which was said to have been recovered.

Nicholson, of Low Biggins, Carnforth, was jailed after admitting theft and two charges of dishonestly making a false representation. He had received counselling and GP support after criminal conduct came to light.

Police financial investigators set about clawing back cash from him under tough Proceeds of Crime Act legislation.

And at the crown court, barrister Wayne Jackson announced that the benefit figure of Nicholson’s offending was agreed by both the prosecution and defence to be £14,235.66.

“That, coincidentally or not as far as assets are concerned, matches the money in an (investment company) account,” said Mr Jackson, who explained that a “pragmatic settlement” had been reached. That matching available asset amount was already “restrained” by police, Recorder Timothy Hannam QC heard.

Recorder Hannam directed that a confiscation order be made in the sum of £14,235.66. He also ruled that if that amount was not paid within 28 days, Nicholson would serve a one-year prison term in default.

A judge who sentenced Nicholson in August had remarked on a “strange case of greed”, telling the defendant: “You don't need me to say that the offending is a thorough breach of trust, and you have abused your position in order to make a substantial dishonest gain for yourself."