THE family of the dying woman whose drugs were stolen by two carers, have told the Isle of Wight County Press they think their sentences were lenient.

However, they defended the Island care firm who employed them.

Kenneth Andrew Cast and Jodie Oakley, both aged 31 and employed by Care at Home to look after the needs of 91-year-old Beryl Carpenter, were both handed a suspended jail term when they appeared before Island magistrates last week.

Cast, who admitted theft of the palliative drug morphine sulphate on June 17, and Oakley, who pleaded guilty to handling stolen goods, a box of the drug, on the same date, had gained the trust of Mrs Carpenter, who died on September 5.

It was described by Crown Prosecution Service solicitor, Vivian Ducie, as a 'callous act and truly miserable crime'.

How the County Press reported the case of Cast and Oakley.

After the hearing, Mrs Carpenter's eldest son, Jim Worsley, defended the care provision of Care at Home.

He said: "We as a family are devastated by the conduct of the two individuals and, given the absence of the stolen drug, which could have had serious consequences, we feel the sentences were lenient.

"However, it must be said the other four regular Care at Home carers, who had looked after mum since February this year, had always been sincere in their care, were trustworthy and did their best to meet mum’s needs and wishes.

"This was not an easy task, given mum’s disabilities. Their patience and understanding enabled us to meet her wish to remain in her own home."