A man has been convicted of theft after he deceived an individual into paying €2,000 for arranging flights and visas to New Zealand for the victim’s family.
Niall Minogue with an address at Barna, Woodsgift entered a plea to all five counts of theft on dates including May 23, June 6, June 7 and 8 in 2014, Kilkenny Circuit Court heard last week.
Mr Minogue, 39, is already serving a sentence of four years and nine months for similar matters and has been in custody since November 9 of last year and is due for release in May 2020.
Giving evidence, Detective Garda Patrick Cullen said the victim in this case was looking to work in New Zealand as had been living in Ireland with his partner and child for five years on May 23 of 2014. The court heard he made a decision to leave Ireland.
He searched online and found Quality Global Personal with an address on Patrick Street in Kilkenny and the company serviced visas to Canada and New Zealand plus flights for all the family.
Detective Garda Cullen said an investigation revealed the director of the company to be Niall Minogue.
A meeting was arranged at the Red Cow between Mr Minogue and the injured party which resulted in the victim paying a deposit of €2,000 in cash.
The court heard there were a further four separate transactions on three different days again in June which amounted €2,150 and were paid to a bank account of Quality Global Personal.
In June the victim rang Mr Minogue as he “thought it was a scam”. Mr Minogue said the injured party would get a full refund but no money has been recovered.
The court heard the victim is still living in Ireland and Judge Brian O’Callaghan said he hoped this was by choice. Mr Minogue offered an apology during Garda interview and was fully co-operative and made full admissions.
He has 31 previous convictions with 26 of these relating to theft and “similar type offences” and is currently serving a custodial sentence.
Defence counsel for Mr Minogue, Patrick O’Riordan, said his client has a “longstanding pervasive gambling addiction” and the majority of his previous convictions relate to similar issues that arose from a company he was running at the time.
Judge O’Callaghan said the victim trusted Mr Minogue to a certain extent with his families’ future and those future plans were “dashed”.
The Judge said the level of deception was “quite glaring”.
He added that it was “clearly premeditated and planned”. Judge O’Callaghan ruled that it would not be just or proportional to add to Mr Minogue’s existing sentence and sentenced him to three years with the final six months suspended provided he entered into a bond to be of good behaviour.
The sentence commenced from December 12. He added that four years and nine months for all offences was proportionate. Judge O’Callaghan convicted Mr Minogue under count one for the theft of the €2,000 with the other theft offences taken into consideration.