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Man jailed for four years for stealing from dying boss’ Watford company

 Published on: 5th August 2015   |   By: The Newsdesk   |   Category:

A trusted book-keeper who stole a million pounds from his dying boss in Watford was jailed for four and a half years this week. Andrew Nyman, 51, took financial control of Watford firm Electro Replacement Limited, in Tolpits Lane, when the owner Peter Schonthal became bedridden with cancer and multiple sclerosis. Mr Schonthal died last year at the age of 71, after the full extent of Nyman’s theft had been uncovered. His wife Linda had to abandon retirement plans to keep the firm afloat, St Albans crown court heard. In a victim personal statement he had written before his death, Mr Schonthal said he had built ERL up over 40 years. Nyman’s actions had left him feeling “sick and humiliated” and added to the stress of his terminal condition. Mrs Schonthal, 68, said she had to go to work to rescue the business. She said they had suffered “deceit and betrayal” and that her husband felt he had let her down. “He was always apologising for losing so much.” She went on: “He trusted someone who took advantage of him. Peter thought Andrew was the son he never had.” Nyman, of Kensington Way, Borehamwood, pleaded guilty to charges of fraud, theft and false accounting. Jailing him, Judge Martin Griffith said: “These offences had a serious detrimental effect financially and emotionally. Mr Schonthal’s last, bed-ridden years should not have been clouded by the feeling he had let down his wife.” Picture courtesy of Hoss photography  

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