No punishment for hacking ex-boss’s phone

A civil servant who was found guilty of spying on her former supervisor by hacking into her phone’s voicemail messages, has escaped punishment.

Dublin City Council employee Severine Doyle, aged 39, of Parnell Court, Crumlin, had pleaded not guilty to 11 charges under the Postal and Telecommunications Services Act.

However, following a hearing last June she was found guilty of intercepting voice messages on a mobile phone used by Teresa Conlon, Dublin City Council’s head of housing allocation.

Dublin District Court heard that Ms Conlon’s voicemail messages had been intercepted over a five-week period, from Jan 8 until Feb 11, 2010.

Doyle’s sentencing was adjourned until yesterday and Judge Eamon O’Brien asked: “How is she getting on?”

Defence solicitor Declan Fahy said the case was in for a review and Doyle was “getting on brilliantly”.

“I will strike it out with liberty to re-enter,” said the judge, adding: “I am giving her a chance; the ball is in her court.”

During the trial, on Jun 28 last year, Ms Conlon had told Judge O’Brien that she found out that some city councillors had said they had listened to tapes of messages that had been left on her phone.

“A tape had been handed in by councillor Mannix Flynn, with a message from my voicemail,” she testified, adding that she was “extremely upset”.

Ms Conlon later learned her voicemail had been intercepted by a caller using five different phones, including one belonging to Doyle’s 72-year-old mother.

She agreed with state solicitor Tom Conlon that there had been a grievance procedure in relation to Doyle. A complaint against her by Doyle in relation to inappropriate allocation of housing was never proven.

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