Man relapses back to a life of crime

A 29 year old man who carried out two further break-ins while he was on bail awaiting sentencing for more than 14 other burglaries, was sentenced at Dundalk district court last week.

A 29 year old man who carried out two further break-ins while he was on bail awaiting sentencing for more than 14 other burglaries, was sentenced at Dundalk district court last week.

The court heard Niall McGahon of Slieve Foy Park, Muirhevnamor had been making good progress in dealing with his drug addiction but had reoffended following a relapse earlier this month.

The court was told the accused stole a laptop, wallet and credit cards in a burglary at a house in the Waterville Crescent area of the town in the early hours of June third.

Ten nights later, he stole a Play Station 3 from a home in the Woodbury Gardens area and was found in possession of the property on Clanbrassil Street on the 17th of June.

Both crimes were committed while he was on bail in relation to the other burglaries.

The court previously heard Niall McGahon had not come to garda attention before that crime spree which lasted over a five week period from July to the end of August 2011.

The Defence solicitor said last Wednesday that his client had completed a 20 week residential treatment programme and the most recent Probation report indicated he was well motivated to remain drug free.

He said all the signs were positive and that was the great pity that having appeared to conquer his addition that was eight years old or more, he had been driven to reoffend by his need to access funds.

The court heard the accused had not sought bail when he appeared in court the previous week and had begun a detox programme while in custody.

Judge Flann Brennan said “It’s sad and unfortunate that this is an example of where drugs can lead people”.

He imposed nine month sentences for the original cases - and consecutive nine month sentences for the two new charges, but Judge Brennan said he would suspend the latter on the accused entering a bond to be of good behaviour for 18 months.

He told the accused “It means when you come out if you get back into trouble particularly if you return to that lifestyle you’ll serve nine months on top of whatever other sentence is imposed. I have to protect people from what you were doing”.