Former GAA club barman avoids jail for stealing €45k

A former barman, who siphoned off over €45,000 from St Vincent’s hurling and football club when he was working there, was yesterday given a three-year suspended jail sentence and a 240-hour community service order.

Ken Duffy, aged 36, originally from Greenmount, Cork, and now living in an apartment at The Square, Ballincollig, Co Cork, appeared before Cork Circuit Criminal Court several times on this matter over the last few years. Yesterday the sentencing judge said this kind of adjourning of cases brought its own stress to accused persons. So far he has paid back over €13,000.

Judge David Riordan said: “He was in a position of trust. In a fairly short period he has siphoned off a large amount of money which apparently had not shown up on the radar at St Vincent’s hurling and football club.

“On the reckoning of paying €80 per week it would take eight years to repay that. I note indebtedness of €32,000 which is a civil matter from now on.”

Det Garda Frank Morgan testified previously that Duffy had worked as bar manager at the club based on Blarney Road, Cork, from December 2007 until his employment was suspended in January 2009 and eventually terminated in April 2009.

The matter came to light when officers of St Vincent’s arrived at Gurranabraher Garda station with a complaint of suspected fraud. This was followed up with a complaint from the club.

Duffy, in the company of his solicitor, was questioned and he acknowledged the misappropriation of certain sums of cash.

Defence barrister Sinead Behan said Duffy had co-operated with the investigation and was very remorseful. Ms Behan said he did not have a drink or drug problem and had nothing to show for the money he took, having spent it on various consumer items.

She suggested that he may have had a diagnosed compulsive spending disorder at that time.

Det Garda Morgan said the club’s insurance did not cover them against the thefts by Duffy.

Ms Behan said that “there has been a lot of publicity which has impinged heavily on the family”.


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