A TRUSTED manager has admitted stealing tens of thousands of pounds from his employers.

John Speirs was originally charged with fiddling Sibbald Training out of more than £50,000 during more than two years of allegedly dishonest practice.

However, the 56-year-old today pleaded guilty to embezzling the lesser sum of £41,200 over a 20-month period.

Glasgow Times:

Following negotiations between his lawyer and the prosecution, Speirs, of Glenboig, Coatbridge, North Lanarkshire, admitted the indictment charge at Livingston Sheriff Court on Monday.

He took the money while he was working at the training company’s headquarters at Shona’s Way, Blackridge, West Lothian, and elsewhere between January 19, 2018 and October 3, 2019.

Neil Martin, prosecuting, told the court the amended plea was accepted by the Crown and moved for sentence.

He said a written narrative detailing the exact circumstances of the case would be prepared for the next calling.

Sheriff Susan Craig told Speirs she needed criminal justice social work reports into his background before sentencing.

She told him: “I’m not going to deal with the matter today given the sums of money involved and the way in which the money came to you.

“I’m going to have to get reports so the court can have the full range of sentencing options available when you return to court.”

Sentence was deferred until April 27.

Sibbald Training was founded in 1973 by David Sibbald, who initially hired out plant machinery to the construction industry but struggled to find good quality training for his operators.

He set up Sibbald Training which has since grown to offer more than 200 training courses, assessments and vocational qualifications and supports a wide variety of industries throughout the UK.

The training provided at its centres in West Lothian and Aberdeen as well as in clients’ own premises supports a wide range of sectors including construction, utilities and civils, engineering, logistics and distribution and manufacturing.