A former postman who failed to deliver almost 8,000 items of mail in the Dundalk area, has been given a five month suspended sentence.
Pierce Lennon of St. Clement’s Park, Dundalk had previously been told that he would be going to jail unless a witness called by the defence on the next court date convinced the court to do otherwise, as Judge John Coughlan told the defence solicitor the background provided in respect of her client’s drinking problem, didn’t explain the offending.
The 36-year-old admitted that as an employee of a postal service provider, he did intentionally interfere, delay and open postal packets addressed to another, between January 1st 2013 and September 9th 2016 at his home.
The DPP had directed that the case could only be dealt with at district court level if a guilty plea was entered.
The case had previously been adjourned to enable the accused engage in treatment for an alcohol addiction.
In April, the defence solicitor said her client has attended the Turas counselling service and has attended a 10 week detox programme. She said he had lost his job as a postman, had no previous convictions, there was no monetary gain involved in the offence and he was extremely remorseful.
The court heard that 28 mail bags were discovered but gardai were unable to quantity the loss.
Sgt. Fintan McGroder explained that 7,837 items were recovered but 200 were decayed and weather exposed. He revealed that over 6,500 of the items were unopened letters, four were registered mail and 20 items were ‘violated’.
The Defence sought a further adjournment for a Probation report to be prepared but Judge Coughlan told the solicitor "Produce a witness to talk to me… 8,000 of mail. He’s going to jail unless you can show me something else".
The case was put back to last Wednesday. No Defence witness was called, however an updated report was produced by a doctor treating Mr. Lennon, who the defence solicitor said is continuing to abstain from alcohol.
A character reference was also handed into the court, which heard the defendant has a health matter stemming from his alcohol addiction.