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Nursing ban for Haywards Heath card thief
A nurse who was caught stealing credit cards and money from patients has been banned from practising medicine.
Bindu George stole the cards from three patients in the cardiac ward at Princess Royal Hospital in Haywards Heath while working there between July and August 2010.
The patients noticed their cards had gone and money had been withdrawn, totalling £15,240, including several withdrawals at a Tesco Express store where CCTV evidence was obtained.
Ms George was arrested and convicted of four counts of theft at Lewes Crown Court.
She was sentenced to a year in prison, suspended for 24 months, and told to carry out 150 hours of unpaid work.
During the sentencing, the judge said: “Each of the patients were on that cardiac ward, each was ill, and you abused your position of trust as a nurse on that ward.
“Those persons would have expected to have been cared for by a nurse, not to have their property stolen by that nurse.
“Your offending has brought shame not only on you, but sadly on your family – £15,000 odd raised by you for no reason other, as far as I can see, than your obligation, as you saw it, to help your sister back in Kerala in Southern India who was in financial difficulties.”
At a Nursing and Midwifery Council Fitness to Practice hearing, a panel ruled George’s ability to practice was impaired.
A statement said: “The panel has no evidence before it on Ms George’s behalf with regards to any explanation, apology or remediation for her conduct.
“While Ms George may have been motivated by a desire to support her own family this cannot and does not excuse her wholly unacceptable behaviour.”
She has been struck off for five years, pending any appeal, with an interim suspension of 18 months.