A PORTARLINGTON couple who defrauded a supermarket by cashing cheques they did not have the funds to cover were last week ordered to pay compensation and put on probation.
Aisling Palmer, Main Street, Port, and Peter Quinn, Eamon Bracken’s Apartments, Main St, Port, were chraged with making gain or causing loss by deception, at Supervalu, Connolly Street, Mountmellick, on December 23 last year.
Inspector Martin Harrington gave evidence that the pair cashed two cheques in the store, made out to themselves. When arrested, they claimed they thought money had been put into Palmer’s account to cover the cheques.
Quinn has 37 previous convictions, mostly road traffic offences. Palmer had no previous.
Defence, Mr Declan Breen explained that the defendants had been in a relationship at the time and had one child. Palmer is on disability allowance and the money is paid into her bank account, while Quinn was not working at the time but had secured seasonal work in the run up to Christmas. As he had not bank account, Quinn had agreed to lodge his money into Palmer’s account. They had been trying to source groceries for Christmas, but had been “reckless in the extreme” not to check that there were enough funds in the account.
Mr Breen said that the couple’s relationship has now sundered and Quinn has custody of the child, with Palmer paying him maintenance. He admitted that compensation, with a total amount of €450, had not been addressed by his clients, but they were willing to set aside €40 each per week.
The matter was put back to March 14, for a probation report and for each defendant to pay compensation of €225.