It’s not the amount that matters..


This woman is a thief; she stole from her employer [Kaiser supermarkets/German] and her job of 30 years was terminated without notice. Yes, she only stole 1.30Euros. That’s about £1.16 or $1.65 or 2.55AUD or 161Yen.

Although that isn’t quite right either for she didn’t actually just take the money out of the till but used two bottle deposit slips adding up to 1.30 Euros. The woman has gone from earning just under 2000Euros to now receiving benefits and when she sued her former employer the courts judged in the supermarket’s favour.

Of course this has sparked a national outrage, especially considering a CEO was recently given a court sentence slap on the wrist for tax evasion amounting to millions of Euros and allowed to keep his several houses around Europe.

Cue the arrival of the tabloids, namely the BILD Zeitung [which btw is worse than the Sun and the Daily Mail combined, so bad in fact that there’s a whole blog dedicated to it’s gross misconduct]. Of course they pretend to fight for the people, so this headline is hardly surprising:

Overall, the details across the different papers and radio/TV coverage are kind of muddy. Some claim she tried to put blame on another employee, others that she never admitted it and that it was a mistake and some of her former colleagues are standing up for her claiming the company only came down so hard because she was active and outspoken in the worker’s union.

Of course there are recent problems with Big Brother type behaviour in supermarkets and a Tatort episode that dealt with the pressure in discounters so there are probably other issues that need to be looked at in the future, for example how the company became aware she withheld the receipts.

However, I hope that she’ll lose every single appeal. The amount she has stolen doesn’t matter; all that does is that she intentionally withheld money. How can someone be working at the tills dealing with hundreds of Euros on a daily basis if there is no trust?


  1. Posted February 26, 2009 at 8:24 am | Permalink

    Blöd Zeitung? Caveat Lector!

    A supermarket anecdote: buying groceries yesterday the total came to 31 euros, including 11.90 for fresh garlic. WTF? Turns out she’d taken a loaf of bread, weighed it, and punched in the code for garlic.

    *Always* know the price of what you’re buying, and check the bill afterward.

  2. Posted February 26, 2009 at 11:06 am | Permalink

    Oh yeah, I don’t give any credit to the Bild! In my defense, I don’t even buy it, my grandparents do!

    And holy crap, that’s a lot of money for bread! Which supermarket was that?

  3. Posted February 26, 2009 at 11:52 pm | Permalink

    she was wrong but i still feel it’s a harsh decision. i can understand, though, that the boss lost his trust that he couldn’t employ her anymore.

  4. Posted February 27, 2009 at 3:57 pm | Permalink

    You can’t have a killer work with guns the same way you can’t have a thief work with money.

    I’m probably being terribly self righteous with this and it’s not something that fits in my normally more liberal thinking, but she deserved it. It’s a tiny amount of money, but the amount doesn’t matter.

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