Burglar with a lamentable record of over 150 previous convictions is jailed

By Jessica Magee

by Gazette Reporter
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dublin criminal court

A man with a “lamentable” record of over 150 previous convictions has been sentenced to three years in prison for burglary.

Stephen Maher (35) with an address at Marigold Park, Darndale, Dublin 17 pleaded guilty to theft at an office at Point Square, East Wall Road, Dublin 1, on September 30, 2021.

At a sentence hearing, Dublin Circuit Criminal Court heard that Maher entered the office premises in the early hours of the morning with two others, looking for a place to shelter from the rain and take drugs.

They stole laptops and other electronic equipment to the value of €12,953, along with a cash box containing €400, the court heard.

Maher was arrested after he was identified on CCTV drinking a bottle of beer which he also stole at the premises.

Judge Martin Nolan suspended the final 15 months of the sentence “in the vain hope of rehabilitation” but warned Maher that if he did not change, he would be back before the courts.

Judge Nolan described Maher’s criminal record as “lamentable” and said he had suspended a portion of the sentence “more in hope than expectation”.

“He’s had many, many chances…but the court always hopes for rehabilitation,” the judge added, ordering Maher to remain under the supervision of the probation service for 15 months on release.

Garda Adam McGrane agreed with Fergal Foley BL, prosecuting, that Maher had a severe drug problem.

The court heard that among the items stolen were a Samsung S8 phone, seven MacBook Air laptops and six MacBook Pro laptops.

None of the property has been recovered.

Gda McGrane said that DNA from Maher and two other people were found on a bottle of beer at the premises.

Maher was arrested last June and initially gave a false name to gardaí, but soon admitted his role and identified himself on the CCTV footage.

Maher has 151 previous convictions, mostly from the District Court, including assault, robbery, criminal damage, dangerous driving and violent disorder.

Counsel for Maher said he has done very well in prison where he is on an enhanced regime, drug-free and attending school.

“He’s an intelligent young man and he wants to address his addiction. He’s from a good family,” counsel added.

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