Winnipeg Free Press - PRINT EDITION

Nanny who stole $165,000 from judge's widow jailed

  • Print

She was a trusted nanny who swindled a Manitoba judge's widow out of tens of thousands of dollars at a time of grief and hardship.

Now she's paying the price by spending a year behind bars.

Kelly Zaborowicz, 43, learned Friday she lost her bid for a conditional sentence, which would have allowed her to stay free in the community.

She previously admitted stealing more than $165,000 from Susan Wortzman, the widow of the late Court of Queen's Bench Justice John Scurfield.

"The theft in this case involved taking advantage of victims when they were at their most vulnerable," provincial court Judge Larry Allen ruled.

Allen said he was satisfied Zaborowicz didn't pose a public danger, but said her thefts cried out for a strong message to be sent.

"While this couple was dealing with impending death, Ms. Zaborowicz was stealing from them," Allen said.

Zaborowicz was hired to work for Scurfield's family to play a "stabilizing role" in their lives after the judge was diagnosed with cancer.

Between September 2008 and September 2011, Zaborowicz forged 192 of Wortzman's cheques.

The majority of the cheques were deposited into her personal bank account.

Some were used to pay off balances on a credit card in Wortzman's name that Zaborowicz stole.

Some cheques were cashed after she left her position, court heard.

The ill-gotten funds were used to buy furniture, jewelry, spa treatments and other items.

"Greed appears to be the principal motivators for the money stolen," Allen said.

He noted Zaborowicz cashed cheques in the days just before and after Scurfield died in November 2009.

The case came to light after Zaborowicz left her nanny's job and Wortzman noticed issues with her bank account.

Wortzman promptly sued and won a default judgment in civil court, which Zaborowicz didn't contest.

As that was happening, Zaborowicz was charged following a police investigation.

The Crown initially signalled it would consent to a conditional sentence for Zaborowicz, a first offender.

That changed earlier this year when a court-ordered report on her background was viewed as unfavourable by prosecutors.

The tenor of the hearings seemed to change when Wortzman personally described in court the toll the crimes took on her and her ability to trust others.

Allen found the case was different than one in which an offender steals from a workplace or corporation.

"The loss is felt directly as a personal betrayal of trust," Allen said Friday.

Zaborowicz, a mother of two adult daughters, argued she should be allowed to avoid jail in order to stay working and be able to repay what she stole.

Allen, however, noted she has enrolled in school instead of focusing on working at the job she had.

He found she's taken few steps since being caught to make repayments of her own volition.

In addition to the jail time, he ordered Zaborowicz to serve two years of probation.

Republished from the Winnipeg Free Press print edition May 17, 2014 B1

Fact Check

Fact Check

Have you found an error, or know of something we’ve missed in one of our stories?
Please use the form below and let us know.

* Required
  • Please post the headline of the story or the title of the video with the error.

  • Please post exactly what was wrong with the story.

  • Please indicate your source for the correct information.

  • Yes


  • This will only be used to contact you if we have a question about your submission, it will not be used to identify you or be published.

  • Cancel

Having problems with the form?

Contact Us Directly
  • Print

You can comment on most stories on You can also agree or disagree with other comments. All you need to do is be a Winnipeg Free Press print or e-edition subscriber to join the conversation and give your feedback.

You can comment on most stories on You can also agree or disagree with other comments. All you need to do is be a Winnipeg Free Press print or e-edition subscriber to join the conversation and give your feedback.

Have Your Say

New to commenting? Check out our Frequently Asked Questions.

Have Your Say

Comments are open to Winnipeg Free Press print or e-edition subscribers only. why?

Have Your Say

Comments are open to Winnipeg Free Press Subscribers only. why?

The Winnipeg Free Press does not necessarily endorse any of the views posted. By submitting your comment, you agree to our Terms and Conditions. These terms were revised effective April 16, 2010.


Make text: Larger | Smaller


Security footage of attack on Beausejour convenience store owners

View more like this

Photo Store Gallery

  • JOE.BRYKSA@FREEPRESS.MB.CA Local-(Standup photo)- Humming Around- A female ruby -throated hummingbird fly's through the bee bomb  flowers Friday at the Assiniboine Park English Garden- Nectar from flowers are their main source of food. Hummingbirds wings can beat as fast as 75x times second. Better get a glimpse of them soon the birds fly far south for the winter - from Mexico to South America- JOE BRYKSA/WINNIPEG FREE PRESS- Sept 10, 2009
  • July 1, 2012 - 120701  -   Canada Day fireworks at The Forks from the Norwood Bridge Sunday, July 1, 2012.    John Woods / Winnipeg Free Press

View More Gallery Photos


Are you OK with a tax hike if it means the city's roads will be better maintained?

View Results

View Related Story

Ads by Google