A man sold a car to a Portlaoise woman and then, after the car was returned to him for repairs, kept the vehicle leaving her €4,500 out of pocket.
Patrick Lyons (28), 17 The Printworks, Adelaide Villas, Bray, Co. Wicklow, was charged at last week’s court with an offence under the theft act, at Dundrum, on January 14 this year.
Inspector Eamon Curley gave evidence that the injured party, a woman from Portlaoise, bought a motorcar from the accused on January 5 this year, at a cost of €4,500.
She subsequently returned the car to him in Dundrum for minor repairs, but she never saw the car again and no money was returned to her.
The accused disposed of the car, leaving the woman at a loss of €4,500.
The accused had two previous convictions.
Defence, Ms Thomasina Connell said her client had no compensation in court.
Judge Catherine Staines remarked: “This happened last January and he hasn’t got a penny.”
Ms Connell replied that her client was on jobseeker’s allowance of €188 per week. He had been working, but unfortunately no longer.
Judge Staines asked what did he do with the money, to which the accused replied he had spent it.
Judge Staines said she would put the matter back to after lunch, for the accused to have some compensation, but Ms Connell said there was no reality to her client having any money by then.
Addressing the court, the accused said if he was given to the end of February he would have €2,500.
Judge Staines warned him: “You’re not going to get away with this, every single penny has to be paid back.”
The matter was put back to February 23 for the accused to pay at least €2,000 compensation.
Judge Staines also imposed 150 hours’ community service in lieu of six months in prison.