Woman claims she got no money from overtime scheme


A woman accused of falsifying overtime records to increase a co-worker’s pay allegedly told an investigator that she did not get any money from the scheme, a court heard yesterday.

Paulette Wilson, a former chief clerk at the Ministry of Education is on trial for falsifying overtime records to the benefit of Andrew Bridgewater, a former security guard at the ministry, and conspiracy to commit fraud by false pretenses between October 9, 2015 to March 18, 2016.

Wilson, who is on $5,000 bail, has denied the charges at her trial before Magistrate Samuel McKinney. Attorneys Devard Francis and Miranda Adderley represent her.

Inspector Philip Davis is the prosecutor.

Bridgewater has pleaded guilty to fraudulently receiving $6,657.12 in overtime pay to which he was not entitled. The court heard in earlier testimony that overtime had been discontinued for security guards and they were given time off instead.

Sergeant 3133 Kendra Wallace said that she interviewed Wilson at the Central Detective Unit on September 23, 2016 after Sonia Culmer, the permanent secretary at the Ministry of Education, made a complaint to police.

Wallace said that Wilson did not respond when she told her that she was suspected of falsification of accounts and fraud.

Later that day, Wilson allegedly told Wallace during an interview that Bridgewater was her schoolmate and she was only trying to help him.

The court heard in earlier testimony that Bridgewater’s take home pay after deductions was only $135 per week. His salary was increased to $670 per week as a result of the bogus overtime payments.

Wallace said she later held a confrontation between Wilson and Bridgewater.

The court watched a video of the confrontation last month. In the video, Bridgewater alleged that Wilson took most of the money and failed to help him once the overtime payments were discovered and his salary was garnished by $100 per week to recover the money.

In the video, Wilson chastises Bridgewater speaking to Culmer instead of following her advice to seek to have the deductions reduced.

She said that she loved Bridgewater like “a brother” and was only trying to help him.

The trial continues September 19.

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