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Finance director jailed for scam

A finance director has been jailed for embezzling more than £77,000 from her work - which she used to buy luxury gifts.

Petronella MacDougall, 59, used her position as head of accounts to steal tens of thousands of pounds out of a business account over the course of two years.

MacDougall, who was employed by Aberdeen-based production company A-Line Audio Visual, used some of the cash to pay the deposit on a horse box and for her sister's new kitchen.

She was caught by fellow directors Richard Trilk and Andrew Dunn after suppliers complained of missed payments.

Yesterday at Aberdeen Sheriff Court, Sheriff Graeme Buchanan sentenced MacDougall to 20 months in prison.

The court heard that the length of sentence meant she could be no longer be granted a visa to visit New Zealand to see her daughter and grandchildren. A custodial sentence of more than 12 months bars a visa.

Sheriff Buchanan said: "This is obviously a serious matter.

"The view I have reached for an offence of this kind, which involved such a breach of trust that took place over two years, is that a custodial sentence is inevitable.

"The amount of money involved is substantial."

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