Limerick fishmonger speaks out following theft case

Anne Sheridan

Reporter:

Anne Sheridan

LIMERICK’S famous fishmongers, Rene Cusack, have spoken of the relief that their good name in business has been vindicated, after court proceedings concluded last week against four ex-employees who stole over €3,000 from the business.

LIMERICK’S famous fishmongers, Rene Cusack, have spoken of the relief that their good name in business has been vindicated, after court proceedings concluded last week against four ex-employees who stole over €3,000 from the business.

Third-generation owner Paul Cusack said he and his 20 staff “felt a massive sense of betrayal and a massive abuse of trust” after learning that four of his employees of some 20 years were stealing from the company.

Three of those charged before the courts then set up a rival business, Seabreeze on Upper William Street, after they held senior roles in Rene Cusack’s.Paul Cusack said they worked in the areas of accounting, sales and purchasing.

Seabreeze was incorporated as a company on August 28, 2009 – two months after gardai charged them with varying counts of theft over a six-week period.

Mr Cusack was advised by gardai to install a CCTV system in his factory premises in the Raheen Industrial Estate after noticing financial regularities in his accounts.

“I was literally screaming at the CCTV camera, ‘Don’t do it’, when I saw one of them [pocketing cash]. I was amazed because of the calibre of the people, but the proof was as plain as day,” he told the Limerick Leader.

“We don’t want to be seen to be vindictive. All we wanted was vindication that we were the injured party and that our name wasn’t sullied. We want to put this behind us. We are grateful that the rest of our staff are very good staff,” he said. Three ex-employees charged with theft had also sought to bring their dismissal from the company to the Employment Appeals Tribunal. However, Judge Carroll Moran dismissed these claims as a “cock and bull stories”.

“It has been a difficult two years, but thankfully it’s behind us. It was a distraction from the business and we felt a great deal of frustration,” said John Sheehan, financial controller at Rene Cusack.