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Plan to commit theft offences in West Cork was ‘unwise' – judge

September 20th, 2018 1:02 PM

By Southern Star Team

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A DISTRICT Court Judge told a 21-year-old Cork city man when sentencing him to three months in prison that it was unwise to be coming down from the city to commit offences in West Cork.

Judge James McNulty made the comment when dealing with the case of Keith Newman of 139 Elm Park, Wilton, Cork who pleaded guilty to stealing a bottle of vodka  worth €12 and a bottle of Captain Morgan’s rum worth €8 from two different supermarkets in Dunmanway, as well being drunk in a public place and failing to appear in court on two occasions.

Sgt Paul Kelly told a recent sitting of Clonakilty District Court that that on April 20th last, gardaí in Dunmanway received a call from Healy’s SuperValu about an alleged theft. Gardaí examined the CCTV and later that day the defendant was seen by gardaí discarding the bottle of vodka that he had stolen. 

The court was told that the defendant had also stolen a bottle of rum from Aldi that day too.

‘Both thefts occurred on the same day and when he was arrested later that night, he was very drunk,’ said Sgt Kelly, who added that the defendant has 44 previous convictions,

Solr Plunkett Taaffe said his client  ‘lost his way’ and lives in Wilton with his  parents.

‘He has developed significant addiction problems, including alcohol and cannabis, and he has a self-referral for Arbour House on September 13th,’ said Mr Taaffe.

‘He had met a friend that day and came down to Dunmanway and went drinking and has no recollection of stealing the drink. He’s here in court with his dad who is supporting him the best he can.’

Judge James McNulty noted that the defendant has been offending a lot and said it was time to go away and added that it was sad that the defendant’s father is here to hear this.

‘When you’re coming from Cork city to offend in West Cork it’s unwise and a custodial sentence is warranted. The number of his previous convictions tips it to a custodial sentence,’ said Judge McNulty.

Judge McNulty sentenced the defendant to 60 days in prison on each of the theft charges, and 30 days on each of  the charges for failing to appear in court on May 1st and June 5th, with all sentences to be served concurrently. The charge of being drunk in a public place was taken into consideration.

Recognisances in the event of an appeal were fixed in the defendant’s own bond of €100 and an independent surety of €300, all to be provided in cash. 

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