Single mum of six Kim Farry made headlines earlier this year when she was dubbed the “shoplifting Queen,” after claiming to have stolen £2m worth of goods.
Shockingly, at the height of Kim’s 45-year “career” she was raking in £50,000 ayear – almost double the average UK salary.
The shameless mum, 54, splurged thousands on gifts for herself and her youngest daughter Paris, 15, each Christmas, including designer clothes, £900 hair extensions, three boob jobs and a BMW.
However, Kim from London, says she won’t be giving any Christmas presents this year because she’s broke after quitting shoplifting for her daughter.
Kim – who now claims £16k in benefits a year, including £120 in disability living allowance for stress, as well as £20 a week child benefit, £58 child tax credits and £660 housing benefit – says: “Christmas used to be my most lucrative period. I was making a lot of money, I didn’t
‘There’ll be no presents this year now I’ve stopped stealing’
Mum-of-six Kim Farry made a living out of her stealing sprees. Now she’s quit but says she can’t afford Christmas on benefits
with wigs and glasses. At first, I’d steal small things like jewellery and sell it on, but it escalated to stealing electricals. Soon,
I was earning £30,000 ayear.
“I loved the thrill, and the money was rolling in. I’d also shoplift to order, or steal clothes then return them for
hard for my children, and I lost custody. I missed Paris’ first few months as a baby because I went to prison – I got her back when she was three months old – and I never forgave myself.
“I’ve also had lots of cautions. Paris hated me being in trouble with the police, so I decided to turn my life around for her.”
Kim – who’ll spend Christmas at one of her children’s houses
– quit shoplifting in January and, although she’s still tempted, she refuses to go back to a life of crime.
She says: “I’d like to get a job
– but it’d have to pay more than £30k to make it worth it. Stealing made me lots of money, but my daughter is proud that I’ve quit, and I want to keep it that way.”
By Emily Cope
credit notes – which I’d then sell off cheap. I bought the kids lots of nice clothes. I never considered getting a job because I wouldn’t have earned anywhere near as much money. I didn’t feel bad – I wasn’t hurting anyone!”
Though Kim began making £50,000 a year, she still claimed Job Seeker’s Allowance as well as £660-a-month housing benefit.
But she was frequently caught and has 30 convictions – her longest jail sentence was eight months. She says:
“I was in and out of prison, which was
want for anything and I spoiled Paris.
We wore designer clothes, hadtop-of-the-range phones and I had my hair and nails done every week.
“Now I’ve given up stealing and started claiming benefits, I can’t afford presents. But I’m proud I’ve turning my life around. It’s my first ‘legal’ Christmas and I’ll never go back to shoplifting.”
Kim – who has six children aged 15-34 from various different relationships – started stealing aged just nine. She recalls: “I was the eldest of nine siblings, with a single mum on benefits who was struggling to get by. She never asked me to steal, but I’d see my brothers and sisters going hungry and started pinching bread and milk.”
Kim soon became addicted to shoplifting. She admits:
“I was expelled from school aged 14 and, when I was 16,
I decided to make shoplifting my full-time job.