Limerick father commits crime to get funds for Christmas

Donal O’Regan

Reporter:

Donal O’Regan

Declan Duggan, solicitor, said his client was extremely co-operative with gardai
A FATHER of two who presented himself as a business to receive five iPhones did so to provide for his family at Christmas time, Kilmallock Court heard.

A FATHER of two who presented himself as a business to receive five iPhones did so to provide for his family at Christmas time, Kilmallock Court heard.

John Kirwan, aged 36, of St Joseph’s Park, Dromcollogher pleaded guilty to the offence on December 16, 2011.

Detective Garda Liam Ruttle said the defendant received five iPhones from Hutchinson 3G.

“He signed a contract for five mobile phones. He presented himself as a business.

“He supplied an ESB bill from his partner’s name to his own name,” said Det Garda Ruttle.

The court heard that the five iPhones are valued at €2,845.

“The contracts signed were for €245 each. If you buy the phone it costs over €500 but on contract it is over €200,” said Det Garda Ruttle, who added that Mr Kirwan had no previous convictions.

Judge Mary Larkin asked if the company got the phones back.

“No, they were subsequently sold on,” said Det Garda Ruttle.

Mr Kirwan’s solicitor, Declan Duggan, said it was the first time his client was ever before a court.

“It is a serious matter for a first offence. He was self employed but this ended due to the collapse of the economy.

“The offence happened just prior to Christmas, days before Christmas.

“Foremost in his thoughts was providing for his partner and two young children at Christmas time. He was not entitled to social welfare because he was self-employed. He had no access to funds,” said Mr Duggan.

The solicitor said Mr Kirwan was in “desperate circumstances” and saw an opportunity.

He said the loss to the company of each phone was €245 as this was the wholesale price.

“He did this under the most difficult personal circumstances,” said Mr Duggan.

When the gardai apprehended Mr Kirwan he was extremely co-operative and has pleaded guilty, said the solicitor.

Mr Kirwan has recently got employment and would save and refund the injured party, said Mr Duggan.

Judge Larkin adjourned sentencing until the case is listed again in October, for payment of compensation.