A Longford man before the courts on a series of theft charges has been given a final chance to pay back the money he owes.
Robbie Delaney, 3 Cúirt An Óir, Killashee Street, Longford, was arrested last Tuesday morning ahead of a sitting of Longford District Court and charged with a number of thefts.
Prosecuting Sergeant Paddy McGirl explained to the court that Mr Delaney had last appeared on July 13, when he entered a guilty plea to a number of theft charges.
“He was due to pay €351.48 today. The offence he was arrested for today occurred on August 23, while he was on bail for these charges,” said Sgt McGirl.
Defending solicitor, Bríd Mimnagh explained that her client led “a chaotic lifestyle”.
“He went to the UK for treatment for addiction and he tried to get the money together,” she said.
“He’s extremely anxious to pay back the money. If he was given time, he would have the money on the next occasion.
“He has a 14-year-old child and he pays €40 maintenance per week.”
Judge Marie Keane recalled seeing the accused before when she sat in Longford.
“He came before me in December and he was to pay €50 on the next date and he was to try and get rehab. A probation report was directed,” said Judge Keane.
Ms Mimnagh agreed and explained that her clien went to England to get treatment.
“He is a persistent offender. He appears to be continually coming before the courts for section fours,” said Judge Keane.
“I’m sure there are many retailers in Longford living in dread of seeing Mr Delaney in their premises.”
“He’s at the coal face now,” Ms Mimnagh said in her client’s defence.
“He was the last time as well but it didn’t seem to have any effect,” Judge Keane shot back.
Ms Mimnagh said that, while she accepts her client was wrong, no matter how much he had stolen, his charges were all for small thefts.
“Here we are nearly a year later and nothing has been paid,” Judge Keane insisted.
“He just keeps offending and this is going to continue until sombody applies the brakes. What has he been doing since last Christmas?”
Speaking up to the judge, Mr Delaney explained that he has a 14-year-old child for whom he pays maintenance.
“I’m trying to keep out of trouble. I promise I won’t appear before you again,” he said to Judge Keane.
“But you promised that the last time,” she replied.
“This isn’t good at all. You’re not taking it seriously.”
“I was in a bad place,” Mr Delaney insisted.
“You were stealing goods from shops, Mr Delaney. Call a spade a spade. And all of these retailers are at the loss of items and of money. When is the money going to be paid?” she demanded.
After a brief conversation with her client about when the money would be paid, Ms Mimnagh told Mr Delaney, “well, you might want to do a bit better than Christmas”.
“Absolutely not,” said Judge Keane, who had an earlier date in mind.
“Would you consider November 3?” Ms Mimnagh asked.
Settling on November 3, Judge Keane remanded Mr Delaney on bail on an own bond of €100 , under the strict conditions that he sign on daily at Longford Garda Station and obey a curfew of 10pm to 7am.
He is also to commit no further offences and, at the request of Sgt McGirl, he was ordered to provide a phone number to gardaí and to be contactable.
“Remand on bail to November 3 for sentencing and no further excuses,” Judge Keane stressed.