Hackney con artist caught fleecing renters for deposits

Catia Jesus

Catia Jesus - Credit: Archant

A con-artist from Hackney stole deposits for nonexistent rooms from renters in Waltham Forest was caught after they turned up at her house to confront her.

Catia Jesus, 25, of Brenthouse Road, pleaded guilty to five counts of theft at Snaresbrook Crown Court last week.

She had been advertising rooms at different houses in Exmouth Road, Walthamstow; Brenthouse Road, Hackney; Salmon Lane and Commercial Road, Tower Hamlets last year.

She would take people to see a room of a house she was renting at the time in Exmouth Road and tell them the actual room for rent was at a different address in the same road, but the tenant had not yet moved out.

In total, Jesus fleeced 10 people out of deposits of between £185 and £540 for the rooms.

The victims had been told by Jesus they could move in on February 8 last year. But days before she would text them saying the tenant had not moved out of the room and asked them to delay their moving date.

Some of the victims became suspicious Jesus might be deliberately stalling them and six of them turned up at her home to confront her, before realising she had conned them all.

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They all returned to her house with police three days later but when Jesus said she couldn’t pay them back she was arrested.

She was sentenced to nine months imprisonment, suspended for 18 months and given 200 hours unpaid work and ordered to pay a victim surcharge of £100.