TWO farmers got a lucky break when their stolen calf boxes were returned by gardai in better condition that they were before.
Victor Hannon, aged 23, of Rathcannon, Athlacca pleaded guilty at Kilmallock Court to two counts of handling stolen property at Ballyea, Fedamore, and O’Rourke’s Cross, Bruree, on January 12, 2013.
Detective Garda Christopher Cowan said on December 19, 2012 two trailers were stolen from farms in Galbally and Tournafulla.
“One of the owners saw his trailer on DoneDeal.
“He rang Mr Hannon and arranged to meet at O’Rourke’s Cross in Bruree. He also rang the gardai.
“They met at O’Rourke’s Cross but it wasn’t the trailer the injured party arranged to see,” said Det Garda Cowan.
Gardai intervened and the defendant told them where the calf box was being stored, heard the court.
“The two trailers were recovered and returned to their owners.
“Anything we asked him he complied with,” said Det Garda Cowan.
Hannon’s solicitor, Brendan Gill said his client had nothing to do with the theft of the trailers, which the Bruff-based detective garda agreed with.
“He purchased the trailers from a certain website at a low cost, improved the trailers and sold them on.
“He is the only one who has suffered,” said Mr Gill.
The solicitor said Hannon is a 23-year-old man who had qualified as a carpenter shortly before the incident.
“He was out of work at the time. He accepts he should have been more careful.
“He is now in full-time employment. He has learned his lesson. He is the only person who has lost out. It was a once off,” said Mr Gill.
Judge Marian O’Leary said she would give Hannon “one chance”.
If he pays €500 to the court poor box the judge said she would strike out the two charges of handling stolen property.