A delivery van driver made an impromptu decision to pick up 18 bottles of spirits for himself from a cage in a loading bay — and yesterday he was sentenced to four months for theft.
David Castanho, of 17 Grange Mór Park, Rosslare Strand, Co Wexford, pleaded guilty at Cork District Court yesterday to his part in the theft.
He and another man used a sweeping brush to direct CCTV cameras away from the location where the alcohol was placed but the cameras still captured the van that Castanho was driving at the time.
Inspector Brian O’Donovan said the manager of Captain America’s, South Main St, reported the theft of 18 bottles of spirits, to the value of €360, stolen from a shared loading bay on St Augustine St. The bottles were taken from a cage in the loading bay.
Insp O’Donovan said Castanho had 100 previous convictions, many of them for road traffic offences. He had some old convictions for possession of stolen property and theft.
Shane Collins-Daly, defending, said the Portuguese national is a 55-year-old married man who was working as a delivery man and had an accomplice with him at the time.
“The accused arrived to deliver his stuff. There was alcohol sitting there. Temptation got the better of the two of them.
“The accomplice took it but Mr Castanho accepts he was part of a joint enterprise. Between them they tried to move CCTV cameras,” said Mr Collins-Daly.
“He accepts responsibility. There was no question of breaking in or anything like that.
“They made a very poor decision on the day in question. He has paid the compensation. He was sacked as soon as his employer found out.”
Castanho has since found another job and has been working up to six days a week, the court heard.
Insp O’Donovan told the court Castanho received an 11-month suspended sentence in Wexford in 2014 for an offence the previous year of handling stolen property.
Mr Collins-Daly said: “If he thought about it, he was in his work vehicle and there was no way he would ever get away with this.”
Judge Olann Kelleher said what concerned him was that the same defendant got a suspended jail sentence in 2014.
He imposed a jail term of four months, which will be appealed by Castanho.
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