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Maruth Francis

The defendant, Maruth Francis, right, is escorted to prison on Monday, May 23, 2022.

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Prosecutor Station Sergeant of Police Renrick Cato has asked the Serious Offences Court to give a “short, sharp shock” of a prison sentence to a hotel worker who stole US$1,140 from a member of the delegation of the Indian president that visited St. Vincent last week. 

Earlier today (Monday), Maruth Francis, of Sandy Bay and Diamond, pleaded guilty to a charge that  between May 14 and 19, 2022, at Villa, she stole US$1,140, the property of Anju Sharma, of Suriname.

The facts of the case are that Sharma, who works at the Embassy of Indian in Suriname, travelled to St. Vincent as part of the advance party that arranged the presidential visit.

Sharma stayed at Beachcombers Hotel and made reservations there for the presidential delegation.

Francis was assigned to clean Sharma’s room during her stay.

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On the afternoon of May 14, Sharma spoke with her mother, who told her to secure her money because she is in another country.

Sharma, therefore, went to her room and counted the money, which she had in her laptop bag.

It amounted to US$1,160.

Sharma wrapped the money in a piece of paper and placed  it back in her bag, which she put in the clothes cupboard. 

On May 19, about 9 a.m., Sharma along with the Indian First Lady, Savita Kovind, was going out so Sharma went to check on her bag and found that it only contained US$20.

After the discovery, Sharma sat for 20 minutes, unable to believe what had happened.

She then went and checked again. She checked a third time and then reported the matter to the hotel manager.

The matter was reported to the police and detective Corporal 858 Hoyte conducted an investigation, during which he recorded a statement from Francis.

Police also conducted a search at Francis’ home, during which they recovered a Bank of SVG  pass book.

The detective questioned Francois about the transaction and she said that her boyfriend had sent money to her.

Francois was taken to the Calliaqua Police station, where she was cautioned and interviewed in the presence of justice of the Peace Joel Woodley.

During the interview, she admitted to stealing the money. Police recovered EC$1,790 from Francis. 

In mitigation, Francis, who was not represented, told the court that she has a 3-year-old child and asked to be given an opportunity to repay the money.

In his submission on  sentencing, Cato told the court that Francis was placed in a position of trust, and breached that trust.

He further pointed out that the Indian delegation had donated money to charity in St. Vincent but Francis stole from them. 

Chief Magistrate Rechanne Browne observed that Francis had displayed no remorse.

The chief magistrate remanded Francis into custody until her sentencing to Tuesday. 

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17 replies on “Hotel cleaner steals $1,140 from member of Indian president’s delegation ”

  1. Yusiff Banditt says:

    She let down the Government and people of St. Vincent and the Grenadines. She should be jailed for her crime

  2. If it wasn’t given to yo ah no yours, if yuh didn’t work for it ah no yours… no tek um… strewwpsss

  3. Alen Ballantyne says:

    Come on mercy committee free her, gun crime is worst than stealing , also she is from a red constituency.

  4. This is such an embarrassment to the people of SVG, why would you think the missing money would go unnoticed? People need to learn to see things without touching. I would hope your parents taught you better. you’ve made a public spectacle of herself and brought shame and disgrace to your family. Now your faith hangs in the balance with the possibility of incarceration, leaving young children to grow up with someone else because you made a bad choice.

  5. wha d rass mia c aya? Melee, commess? thief also known as fingersmith, kleptomaniac, heister, pilferer, larcenist and trustbreacher.

  6. October vincy says:

    I agree she should be lock up she should have known she have a 3yrs old before she steel the money so lock she ass up otherwise she will do it again so teach her a lesson

  7. This is so shameful and disgrace to stole from the same client who paying your salaries. Also such a disgrace from the laboir constancy of Sandy Bay . I thought things are nice in vincy under the same ULP government you supporting. Old people say see and do like you na see . People must not take things that doesn’t belongs to them . How can someone so silly thinking that the Guess won’t realized her monies went missing. Such a disgrace to the entire country and also the ULP government should be a shame that one of their strong hold ULP Carib Constituency stole foreigner monies whom they entrusted

  8. It just shows that even though you are working, you are still in poverty people don’t blame the woman, PEOPLE BLAME THE GOVERNMENT AND ALL HIS CRONIES, DISGRACE TO ALL THE BASTARDS

  9. Dian weekes says:

    She should make to pay 5000.00 for stealing, or two months in prison. Put shame on the country.

  10. Orlando Alexander says:

    While we are all quick to jump up an judge others for wrong doing, we need to also search ourselves and see ” he that is without sin, cast the first stone”. Despite the fact that I don’t condone wrong doing and ill traits, there is always a root cause for someone’s actions. Yes she may have stolen because of different reasons, but that does not give any of us the right to condemn her. Yes she broke the value and quality of trust, yet still she is still flesh and blood running on emotions. Yes she she be able not to touch what is not her in the first place, but sending everyone to prison for petty crimes creates, 1) a bigger criminal. 2) puts more pressure on tax payers. 3) have adverse effects on the minors that are connected to the perpetrator. 4) the law is being insensitive to real crime that is most damaging to society.
    My recommendation is that St Vincent and the grenadines needs a rehabilitation center for therapy rathe than prison that will mess up the mind if and individual even more than what it is in the current state.

    So what about the Government????? Because taxation is theft!!!!! Who is sentencing the Government?????

  11. Take warning says:

    When you belong and keep company with certain cults and see others are not being harassed and may get only a slap on the wrist, what do ar yo expect? Example is not the greatest teacher?

  12. Nathen Green says:

    It was an act of friendship and diplomacy and the money was only borrowed. When you have thieves in the police force selling guns, and thieves in the government robbing us blind what else do you expect. Shoot someone in the leg and you get a hero’s medal. Punish this girl, give her life imprisonment. Fools!

  13. Her eyes to darn big, shameful and disgusting, she cannot be trusted jail her ass, she deserves it. The thief them in SVG get away with too much that why it’s such a big problem in SVG.

  14. Glad to see some semblance of compassion still prevail in SVG. Seems like we have a perfect island without sin since we are so quick to cast the first stone. Prison sentence should never be the answer to every crime.

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