Hays Travel agent appeals jail term after admitting branch theft

Hays Travel Belfast theft
By Linsey McNeill
Home » Hays Travel agent appeals jail term after admitting branch theft

A Belfast-based travel agent who stole up to £16,000 in cash from Hays Travel is appealing a five-month jail term.

Conor Walker, 29, took foreign currency from the city centre shop’s bureau de change on 31 January.

Belfast Magistrates’ Court heard that he had access to the safe at the branch in Victoria Square shopping centre as his duties included lodging cash delivered by a courier and setting up the bureau de change facilities in the morning.

However, on the morning of 31 January, his colleagues realised a significant amount of money was missing, the court heard.

The money had been taken from the safe, the bureau de change and from travel bags used to place cash payments made by customers to the branch.

Walker had already left the shop – allegedly having pocketed more than $8,400, €6,000 and £2,100 – but he was caught on CCTV cameras leaving Victoria Square by a back door.

Two months later, he presented at a police station where he made a full confession. He also apologised for his actions, saying he stole the money to cover payday loans, which had left him £20,000 in debt.

However, his lawyer told the court that while the shop estimated it was missing around £16,000, the amount taken by Walker might have been less.

He was handed a five-month custodial sentence but released on bail pending an appeal against the sentence.

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