Court - Suspended jail for stealing social welfare cheques

Theft

Court - Suspended jail for stealing social welfare cheques

A man who stole and cashed two social welfare cheques has been given a suspended sentence after being found unsuitable for community service.

Dana Rusu (48), 5 Barrow Mews, Portarlington, was convicted of two counts of stealing property, and two counts of handling stolen property, on dates between December 18, 2015, and January 13 this year.

On January 13 this year, the injured party reported to gardaí that their social welfare cheques were stolen.

The accused, Dana Rusu, cashed both cheques at a butcher’s shop on Main Street Portarlington.

When arrested, she admitted the offence and said she had received the cheques from a friend.

When the case first came before the court in October, Rusu paid €500 compensation and Judge Catherine Staines imposed 100 hours’ community service in lieu of three months in prison.

However, at last week’s sitting of the district court the accused was found not suitable for community service due to a medical condition that prevented her from working outside.

Judge Staines asked was there no indoor work that could be done.

To this query, a probation officer present in court replied that they weren’t sure if such work was available in Portlaoise.

Judge Staines imposed three months in prison on the accused, suspended for one year.