Social welfare fraudster makes repayments

Mike Dwane

Reporter:

Mike Dwane

AN appeal by a Polish man who was sentenced to nine months in prison for defrauding the Department of Social Protection of €3,200 has been adjourned so the state can verify whether the full amount has been repaid.

AN appeal by a Polish man who was sentenced to nine months in prison for defrauding the Department of Social Protection of €3,200 has been adjourned so the state can verify whether the full amount has been repaid.

Jacek Sadurski, 34, of Mill Road, Corbally, was convicted on three counts of deception between December 6, 2010 and April 6, 2011 but appealed the severity of the sentence imposed at Limerick District Court.

At an appeal hearing in the Circuit Court in April, Judge Carroll Moran heard that Sadurski used the identity of another Pole, who had returned to his homeland, to claim welfare.

Using the social services card of his former housemate, Stanislaw Dam, Mr Sadurski would sign on at the social welfare office at Dominic Street and collect the benefits from the GPO on Cecil Street. Mr Dam would travel to Limerick once a month to collect the money. During this time, Sadurski, a former Dell employee, would collect his own jobseekers allowance payments from the post office at Bridge Street.

Solicitor Darrach McCarthy said “the only payment Mr Sadurski received for this was the occasional bottle of whiskey or petrol money from Mr Dam”.

State solicitor Michael Murray outlined that the offences had come to light after a department inspector “received information that someone other than Mr Dam” was collecting benefits to which he was no longer entitled. Sadurski was arrested at the hatch on Dominic Street on April 6, 2011.

Judge Moran had said in April that social welfare fraud “would in the normal course of events warrant a custodial sentence”.

But given that Sadurski was not claiming the money for himself, he adjourned the case to allow him make repayments.

This Tuesday, Mr Murray said he was satisfied €2,000 had been repaid and he had seen documents to suggest the balance had also been recouped by the state. But he asked for a brief adjournment to “verify” the sum had been repaid in full.

Sadurski will appear before the court again on October 9.