Eight-year sentence for burglaries

A chronic heroin addict grandfather who was “groomed into crime from the age of eight” by his own father has been given an eight-year sentence for a string of burglaries by Judge Katherine Delahunt.

John Kane's father used to visit him in rural juvenile institutions so he could rob local houses, Judge Delahunt was told at Dublin Circuit Criminal Court.

Kane (aged 45) pleaded guilty to burglary in Lucan on May 22, 2007 and at two homes in Cabra on May 19, 2007, as well as eight burglaries in the Blackrock area between April and July 2006.

He had 155 previous conviction, 75 of which were for burglaries and he told gardai he committed the crimes to feed his addiction.

Judge Delahunt described Kane as “a tragic character in many ways who has spent more time in institutions then with his family” and noted that he has served substantial sentence in England for burglary before being “sent home as an undesirable.”

She told Kane: “You are a serious risk to the public because of your criminal activities.”

Judge Delahunt imposed consecutive sentences totalling eight years and suspended the final two years.

Detective Garda Ernie Henderson told prosecuting counsel, Ms Fiona McGowen BL, that gardai who responded to a call about a suspected burglary in Lucan on May 22, 2007 observed Kane fleeing from the scene. He eventually gave himself up and a laptop and rings taken from the house were recovered.

He told gardaí he needed money for drugs. He said he was sorry for the burglary and told them: “While I am here I want to admit to more.” He then admitted the further burglaries.

Detective Garda Henderson Kane was on bail for the burglaries committed in Blackrock the previous year when he was arrested.

Mr Derek Cooney BL, defending, said his client had been “groomed” into crime from eight years old by his father who had shown him how to break into cars. His father then visited him at various juvenile institutions and took the opportunity to break into local homes.

Counsel said Kane was now a grandfather since the birth of his son's child.

Mr Cooney said Kane had “a horrendous childhood at the hands of the State” and became a heroin addict. He said the Residential Institutions Redress Board “in their wisdom gave €38,000 to a junkie” and Kane a significant amount of it on drugs after taking care of his family.

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