Tool thief freed to tackle problem with alcohol

A 36-year-old Cork man who stole a €1,500 power-washer in Fermoy was freed from a jail sentence yesterday on his commitment to clean up his long-time alcohol problem.

Mark Howell was brought from Cork Prison to Cork Circuit Appeals Court yesterday.

Howell appeared in court earlier in the week appealing a six-month sentence imposed on him at Fermoy District Court for stealing the power-washer from Fermoy Tool Hire at Castlehyde Road, Fermoy, Co Cork.

Howell stole the property on April 1, 2014. He was also caught handling stolen property at Annabella, Mallow, Co Cork, on the same date.

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That handling charge was taken into consideration at the District Court as Howell was sentenced to six months for the theft.

Howell appealed that sentence before Judge Seán Ó Donnabháin.

The judge was told that the appellant had an extensive list of previous convictions for theft and had failed to deal with his alcohol problem.

Judge Ó Donnabháin remanded him in custody earlier in the week until yesterday. On Howell’s undertaking to take part in a residential treatment programme at Fellowship House, Tabor Lodge, Cork, from Monday, the judge released Howell from custody.

The appeal was adjourned until June 28 on condition he would attend the programme.

Howell did gather €1,000 in compensation for Fermoy Tool Hire.

Howell has previous convictions, including using false credit card details and leaving without paying for several nights of accommodation at a number of different hotels and guesthouses.

While Howell previously had addresses at Blarney Street in Cork and in Mallow, the address that appeared for him in the present case was at Lisbeg, Oakpark, Tralee, Co Kerry.

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