The manager of a painting and decorating shop who was caught stealing €440 from his company after it installed a secret CCTV system has been jailed for 21 months.
Alan Moore had pleaded not guilty to 10 counts of taking cash from Castle Interiors in the Courtyard Shopping Centre in Co Donegal.
However, after a five day trial, the 56-year-old was found guilty of the charges and was released on bail to be sentenced at Letterkenny Circuit Court.
Judge John Aylmer said the systematic nature of the thefts could not be ignored.
He also said Moore had tried to claim he was targeted by his employer to stop him paying a redundancy payment as the shop was closing which he said was not the case.
He said the father-of-two had frustrated the investigation by giving false explanations when various charges were put to him during interview.
Judge Aylmer said he placed the offences in the mid-range and that each charge merited a prison sentence of two years.
However, because Moore had no previous convictions and had previously enjoyed a long history of employment and had a low risk of reoffending, he reduced the sentence to one of 21 months with all to run concurrently.
The trial heard the company installed a specialist CCTV system to catch a suspected thief after their accountant noticed their business was not performing as well as it should be.
Castle Interiors, a painting and decorating supply company, had noticed their books were not tallying over a period of time.
They installed a new surveillance camera system and observed one employee who was caught red-handed dipping in and out of the till.
Between November 22, 2013, and December 2, 2013, a contemporaneous note was made of everything that happened in the shop as seen on the live CCTV stream.
Moore, with an address at Lurgybrack, Letterkenny, had been reprimanded on a number of occasions for leaving the till open.
The jury was shown footage of 10 incidents when More took cash out of the till and put it into his pockets.
When approached about the incidents Moore became very angry and later claimed that the owner had wanted to close the shop and did not want to pay out redundancy money.
Detective Garda Paul Lynch gave evidence of interviewing Moore after he was arrested.
He admitted he had operated a haphazard system for operating the till for a number of years but this had been tolerated by management.
In his victim impact statement, owner Rossa McCosker said he operated a number of businesses and after this, he had found it difficult to trust employees.
“I am less able to trust individuals and am watchful and needy and I feel more vulnerable to fraud,” he said.
The court was told that Moore had no issues with drugs, drink or gambling.