The Queen’s former employee has been sentenced to 8 months in prison for stealing from Buckingham Palace

Mikhaila Friel-Tue, January 5, 2021, 6:11 AM EST

  • Adamo Canto, a former Buckingham Palace employee, has been sentenced to eight months in prison after stealing and re-selling items from the palace, the Daily Mail reports.
  • The former palace catering assistant pleaded guilty to stealing items worth up to $130,000. He made $10,459 after selling 37 of the stolen items on eBay.
  • The stolen items included signed photos of the Duke and Duchess of Sussex and the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge, and a personalized cell phone made for Prince Andrew.
  • Canto was in debt of around £8,000 ($10,694) before deciding to steal and re-sell the items, his lawyer told Westminster Magistrates’ Court.

A former Buckingham Palace staff member has been sentenced to eight months in prison after admitting to stealing items worth up to $130,000 from the royal residence, the Daily Mail reports.

Adamo Canto received his sentencing at Westminster Magistrates’ Court on January 4 after pleading guilty to three counts of theft between November 11, 2019 and August 7, 2020.

Canto stole the items, which included signed photos of Prince Harry and Meghan Markle and Prince William and Kate Middleton, when he was working as a catering assistant at the Queen’s London home.

The Daily Mail reports that Canto made £7,700 ($10,459) after selling 37 of the stolen items on eBay, including a state banquet photo album with pictures of President Donald Trump’s visit to the UK and a personalized Samsung cell phone made for Prince Andrew.

Queen and Trump
President Trump and Queen Elizabeth II at a state banquet in Buckingham Palace. Dominic Lipinski- WPA Pool/Getty Images

The former palace employee’s role was changed to include more cleaning during the coronavirus pandemic, which meant Canto gained access to offices and other areas of the palace that he wouldn’t have otherwise been permitted to be in, such as the Duke of York’s storeroom.

Canto’s defense lawyer Howard Cohen told the court how Canto was in debt of around £8,000 ($10,694) before deciding to steal and re-sell items from the palace.

“One of the difficulties he experienced when coming to London was to fund his existence. His pay at the palace was minimal and he felt it was difficult for him to sustain the lifestyle he wanted to adhere to,” Cohen said, according to the Daily Mail. “He started to try and pay off the debts he had accrued by living beyond his means by taking out payday loans. In short order he found himself taking a loan to pay the interest of another loan and another and another and built up debts of around £8,000. He should have reached out to his family and friends in Scarborough.”

Cohen also told the court that Canto had repaid £4,800 ($6,523) to the palace so far, and that he initially wasn’t aware of how rare some of the items were.

“He did not know that was a phone that had been particularly manufactured for the Duke of York,” Cohen said.

A Buckingham Palace spokesperson confirmed the report when contacted by Insider, but they declined to comment. Westminster Magistrates’ Court did not immediately respond to Insider’s request for comment.

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