A SHAMELESS mum who cheated her pals out of more than £170k has splashed the whole sum on luxury spa days and holidays.
Alexandra Carnell, 35, has now been jailed for the “despicable” scam she undertook to compete with her wealthy friends.
Carnell cheated a grieving widow and her own business partner out of £172,000 during her crusade.
The Welsh mum spent it on her own “lavish lifestyle” while convincing her to invest in an app she was developing for the property sales market.
Carnell has now been labeled “despicable” by her former friends, who vented the stress and fuss she caused.
She appeared at Merthyr Tydfil Crown Court where she faced four charges of fraud.
The 35-year-old pleaded guilty to the charges and will now spend two years behind bars.
The court heard that Carnell was a director of Uproots Technology Ltd when she carried out the crimes.
She also acted as a landlady for families while pocketing her money.
Prosecutor Peter Donnison told the court Carnell cheated her own business partner Ceri Cassell out of £119,424.
She also took £44,000 from web development company Automise after hiring them to do work for uproots and failing to pay bills.
Carnell, from Coed Eva, Cwmbran, stole £9,000 from the grieving family of solicitor Michael Henderson, who also died of cancer in 2017.
She acted as landlady as she retained the money that should have flowed into Mr. Henerson’s estate from rental income.
In a statement on the impact of the victim, Marion, Mr Henderson’s widow, said: “She caused emotional upset and distress to our family.”
Automise’s Simon Hodgkinson added: “We had to play cat and mouse with Miss Carnell on a daily basis.
“She would regularly change her plans at the last minute. Every day seemed to bring a new crisis.
“I’ve never been lied to so many times. Their deception caused untold stress.”
You exploited friendships and were motivated by greed
Judge Shomon Khan
Judge Shomon Khan, who told her: “They have lived a lavish lifestyle, using investment money to pay for holidays and a lodge in West Wales.
“I’m afraid why you would want to compete with your wealthy friends still doesn’t make sense to me.
“They were decent, honest people. They have pitted people against each other and created an atmosphere of blame.
“All of these victims trusted you – some of them considered themselves your friends.
“You exploited friendships and were motivated by greed.”
After the verdict, husband and wife team Andrew and Rhiannon Servini said they too fell victim to Carnell after being introduced to a party by a mutual friend.
They said they invested £20,000 of their money in their business – and believe their business idea could have made a big profit.
Andrew, 46, said: “What she did to business associates and people she considered friends is absolutely disgusting, it’s despicable.
“Everything that came out of her mouth was a lie. She is very smart and took us with her right away. It left me physically ill and emotionally drained.
“It was a good idea. It was really. She could be a multi-millionaire today.
“It’s unbelievable. It was just short-term greed. She couldn’t wait.”
Carnell is now faced with proceeds from the hearing.