A woman’s sleeping tablets were still being picked up free at the chemist on her medical card more than three weeks after she died, it emerged at Cork District Court.
Garda Hilary Lynch responded to a call to Phelan’s pharmacy at St Patrick’s Street in Cork on October 30, 2014, where a woman had handed in a prescription for medication. However, the woman left without collecting the tablets.
Insp Pat Meaney said at Cork District Court that the pharmacist became suspicious when the woman did not collect the prescription.
Garda Lynch investigated the matter and discovered that Kathleen Foley, aged 43, of 104 Ardbhaile, Mayfield, Cork, had picked up the prescription on October 13, and again on October 21. Foley had dropped in the prescription on October 30 also but had disappeared.
The name on the prescription was that of Kathleen Foley’s mother. Insp Meaney said yesterday: “The death of her mother occurred on October 4.”
Kathleen Foley was charged with two counts of theft of tablets on October 13 and 21, amounting to €89 on each date. She admitted attempted theft in respect of the third occasion.
Insp Meaney said the defendant used her late mother’s prescription and medical card to get the tablets.
Judge Leo Malone wanted to know what kind of tablets they were. Emmet Boyle, defence solicitor, said they were sleeping tablets.
Insp Meaney said that the prescriptions also included blood pressure medication. The latter were not opened and were returned to gardaí. That left a total loss to the pharmacist of €122.
Mr Boyle said the defendant used the sleeping tablets as she found it difficult when her mother died. Judge Malone said the defendant was putting herself at risk by using tablets not prescribed for her.
He put penalty back until May 1 for the accused to gather the €122 compensation.
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