True identity of woman is revealed at Dundalk court

Dundalk District Court

True identity of woman is revealed at Dundalk court

Gardaí have established the true identity of a young Nigerian woman arrested for stealing €10 worth of make-up from a local store, Dundalk district court heard last week.

The woman, who claimed to be a "Rosie Peterson" - a 25 year old of no fixed abode, was before Dundalk District Court charged with theft from Penney's in the Marshes Shopping Centre and not having proper documents.

The defendant was previously remanded in custody for Gardai to establish her identity for sure, and an earlier court sitting was told that Interpol were assisting gardai with their efforts.

Last month Sgt. Fintan McGroder said she had also given them another name - Sarah Imaragbe who 'doesn't have status here' though she has applied for asylum and is believed she is from South Africa.

He said Gardai needed more time to establish her exact identity and fingerprints have been taken.

Judge John Coughlan told the defendant that she 'better start talking' and the Defence solicitor subsequently informed the court the accused had arrived in Ireland from Holland and has been in contact with the authorities here.

She added that Ms. Peterson is from Nigeria and her father has sent her birth certificate to Ireland and she was waiting for that to arrive in the post.

The solicitor said her client had been in custody for a number of days the previous month when the case was first listed and had then been given bail.

The solicitor added that the accused wanted to plead guilty, but Judge Coughlan said: 'We know nothing about her' and when the solicitor said that asylum has been sought here and the defendant had been given an identity card, the judge replied 'That is not worth the plastic it's written on'.

He put back the case for the defendant's identity to be established by Gardai.

Last Wednesday Judge Coughlan was told gardai were satisfied her real name is Sarah Imaragbe she has applied for international protection and is recorded as a Nigerian citizen.

Sgt. McGroder added that a 'take-back request' had been accepted by the Dutch authorities, as that is the first EU country the woman landed in and claimed asylum.

Judge Coughlan imposed a five month suspended sentence but stressed to the accused when she signed her good behaviour bond that it was on the basis that she leaves Ireland for the Netherlands.