Ladbrokes cashier accused of staging robbery with father tells court “he puts on different accents”

A Ladbrokes cashier accused of staging a robbery with her father has told a court that he used a fake accent to conceal his identity on the day he stole over £3,000 from the bookies she worked in.

Chevvine Darling, 28, is charged with theft after thousands of pounds were stolen from the Mill Hill branch of Ladbrokes by a masked robber, who entered the premises on October 9th, 2016.

The court heard that Darling pretended not to know his identity and released the cash to the man, who was later revealed to be her father.

Despite a rocky relationship between the father and daughter, evidence showed that the pair communicated on “30 separate occasions” on the day of the robbery after police seized Darling’s phone, the court heard.

Giving evidence at Kingston Crown Court on Wednesday, Darling told the jury that she was “used to his on and off behaviour” and only had contact with Mr Whyte three or four times per year.

She said that on the day of the robbery she spoke with her father whilst on shift to discuss his relationship with his estranged partner, who lives in Australia with their two young children.

“He wanted my advice on how to get her back and make things right,” she told the court.

Her father John Whyte, who lives in Maidstone, Kent, had arranged to meet with his daughter the day after the robbery took place as he was working in London at the time.

Darling maintains that her father showed no indication of an attempt to commit robbery in earlier conversations.

Richard Burrington QC, prosecuting, asked Darling whether or not she had told her father about the incident later that evening.

“Yes, he asked me if I was okay and he said that we would meet up the next day when he finished work,” she told the court.

The court heard that Darling handed in her resignation at Ladbrokes in December 2016 after being offered another job. She was on her final warning for having her phone behind the counter, the court was told.

“Everyone [at work] had made speculations about the events of the robbery,” she added.

In cross-examination, Burrington suggested to Darling that her father, having realised it was his daughter behind the counter, would have decided not to go through with the heist.

The morning’s proceedings came to a close with Darling telling the court “I would not, at any point, think that my dad would do that to me.”

Darling, of Colindale, northwest London, was arrested in April 2017.

She denies theft and perverting the course of justice.

The trial continues.

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