A 28-year-old bank worker has been handed a prison sentence today after being found guilty of helping a gang to steal £500,000 from wealthy customers.

Le-Keisha Henry-Richards, 28, of High Road, Leytonstone used her position at the Threadneedle Street branch of NatWest in London to commit fraud.

Today at the Central Criminal Court she received a two year prison sentence, suspended for two years.

The sentence at The Old Bailey follows an investigation by the Dedicated Cheque and Plastic Crime Unit (DCPCU), a specialist police unit sponsored by the banking industry.

During enquiries they found that Henry-Richards used her position to access the confidential bank accounts details of high net worth customers.

The fraudster then passed the information to a criminal gang, which used the details to take over the accounts, before applying for new credit cards.

The gang then used the stolen cards to purchase high value goods and to make cash advances which totalled £501,033, between March and November 2011.

RBS bank investigators reported the case to the police after they identified fraudulent address changes on the accounts.

Henry-Richards was convicted of fraud by abuse of position and was also ordered to work 90 hours unpaid .

DCI Perry Stokes, Head of the DCPCU, said: “Henry-Richards abused her position of trust within the bank by stealing confidential customer information which ultimately resulted in the theft of over £500,000 from customer accounts.

“Today’s sentencing sends a clear warning to others that may be tempted to tread this path, crime does not pay and we will bring you to justice.”

The DCPCU has achieved an estimated £450 million in savings from reduced fraud activity – equating to around £800,000 per week.