A Filipino nurse working in Bleinheim, New Zealand was convicted of theft for stealing a credit card from a dead patient and using it 19 times.
Marvel Jr Benjamin Clavecilla was a nurse at Wairau Hospital when he took the credit card from a 90-year-old, Doris Follows, after she died on March 29.
He spent $773.38 on the card over eight days, which included 12 trips to Countdown, spending at a Z service station, Pak ’n Save Blenheim, a Unichem Pharmacy, and on Vodafone credit.
The 46-year-old nurse, who has since resigned, also stole a credit card from an 88-year-old woman, who spent three nights in hospital in May.
He used the card at three fast food restaurants, two department stores, two supermarkets, a service station, a cafe and a dairy over six days, spending $431.04.
Police charged Clavecilla with 19 counts of theft relating to the first victim’s credit card expenditure, and 13 relating to the second patient. He admitted the charges at the Blenheim District Court in July.
On Monday, the court heard Clavecilla moved to New Zealand from the Philippines eight years ago, followed by his family four years later. He had been a nurse for 13 years.
His lawyer Phil Watson applied for a discharge without conviction, saying Clavecilla had never been before the court, and had acted under “extreme financial pressure” in this instance.
“He just wasn’t thinking straight,” Watson said.
Watson said Clavecilla was extremely remorseful and had paid some reparation. He had met with the 88-year-old victim and her son for restorative justice, and they supported his application for a discharge without conviction.
However, both the police and Follows’ family opposed the discharge without conviction.
While a conviction would not directly impact his career as a nurse, it would pose “hurdles” for him moving forward, Watson said.
As a New Zealand resident looking towards permanent residency, he was also concerned about the impact of a conviction on future applications.
Clavecilla was remanded to October 19 for sentencing.xpenditure and was remanded to October 19 for sentencing. (via stuff.co.nz)