A MAN who fraudulently claimed over €14,200 in social welfare “could be before the court for 10 years” at the current rate of repayment, state solicitor Michael Murray told Limerick District Court.
Gerard Anthony Conway, of Rose Court, Keyes Park, pleaded guilty to six offences relating to the receipt of jobseeker’s allowance between 2009 and 2011 - a period during which he was working as a driver.
Mr Murray said that Mr Conway, who is currently out of work, was making repayments by way of weekly deductions of €10 from his jobseeker’s allowance payments.
“Mr Conway,” Mr Murray said, “was previously in receipt of jobseeker’s allowance over a period of time in which he was working six days a week as an independent contractor delivering newspapers.” For this work, Mr Conway was paid €300 a week, out of which he was expected to pay for petrol and the upkeep of his van.
Solicitor John Devane said that his client was hoping to secure employment that would allow him repay the money in full.
Mr Murray said that to date €508 of the money Mr Conway had fraudulently claimed had been repaid, leaving a balance of over €13,700.
At the current rate of deductions, that could mean “he will be before the court for the next 10 years,” Mr Murray observed.
Judge Aeneas McCarthy adjourned the case for 12 months for review.