A FATHER and son who admitted their involvement in the false imprisonment of a middle-aged woman at her rural County Limerick home avoided a prison sentence.
Keith Curtin, aged 19, of Bru na Gruadan, Castletroy, pleaded guilty to falsely imprisoning the woman and to taking two rings and €240 cash from her home at Boher, Caherconlish, on October 11, 2012.
His father - Keith Kiely, aged 39, of Bunkey, Lisnagry - pleaded guilty to a burglary charge relating to the same incident.
During a sentencing hearing, Limerick Circuit Court heard that four men travelled to the woman’s house at around 5pm on the date of the offence as they believed there was a substantial amount of cash in the house.
The woman was tied up for around half an hour while the culprits ransacked the property before leaving with the cash and jewellery.
Det Garda Gary Laide said Curtin and two other men entered the house while Kiely acted as the getaway driver.
Another man, who was sentenced to three years imprisonment for his role in the incident, was previously described as the main instigator while the fourth culprit has never been identified.
Brendan Nix SC, representing Kiely, said the father-of-three did not know the woman was in the house and he said he regrets his actions.
Eimear Carey BL, representing Curtin, said he had been under the influence of older persons on the day and that it has been a “salutary experience for him”.
John O’Sullivan BL, prosecuting, agreed with submissions from both lawyers that the admissions of both men were critically important.
Imposing sentence, Judge Carroll Moran described the incident as a “most despicable offence” and he said it must have been a “very traumatic experience” for the injured party.
While noting that Kiely had not entered the house, he said it was an aggravating factor that he was “leading his son on a criminal escapade”.
He imposed three year sentences, which he suspended for three years.