Man foiled by gardai while trying to steal heating oil

A KNOCKNAGOSHEL who was trying to steal home heating oil from an unoccupied house was found guilty of theft at Abbeyfeale court and fined €200.

A KNOCKNAGOSHEL who was trying to steal home heating oil from an unoccupied house was found guilty of theft at Abbeyfeale court and fined €200.

Paul Windley, Knockbrack, Knocknagoshel pleaded to the offence which took place at Moynsha, Abbeyfeale last December 15.

Sergeant John Lynch, prosecuting, told the court that two Gardai on patrol noticed a car parked near a derelict house and became suspicious. When they investigated, they discovered that home heating oil was being drained into containers. After a search, they discovered Mr Windley who co-operated and admitted he was responsible. The oil had been returned.

Pleading for his client, solicitor Michael Lane pointed out that the value of the oil was about €100 and that nobody was out of pocket as a result of the offence. However, he stressed that Mr Windley had no previous convictions for theft and it was uncharacteristic of him. Mr Windley, he said, was a full-time carer for his partner who has a disability. “It was a stupid incident and he greatly regrets his actions,” Mr Lane said.

“I am conscious of the fact he has pleaded guilty at the first opportunity,” Judge Mary Larkin said, noting also that Mr Windley suffers from a disability. However, she added, she was also conscious there was a “certain amount of premeditation involved”. “He had to put together the containers,” she said, imposing a €200 fine. “I certainly hope he has learnt his lesson.”