Cattle rustler traced by a trail of hooves that led to his farm
A man who admitted stealing cattle from an elderly neighbour will live with the "shame and disgrace" for the rest of his life, a court has been told.
At Ennis Circuit Court, Padraig O'Brien (42) of Maghereigh, Mountshannon, Co Clare, pleaded guilty to 15 separate counts of stealing cattle from John Ford (74) between May 2013 and January 2015.
In court, counsel for O'Brien, Patrick Whyms, said that a psychiatric report recorded how former friends and acquaintances "will no longer talk to Mr O'Brien" because of the offences.
Mr Whyms added that O'Brien "is going to live with the shame and disgrace for the rest of his life" following he offences.
He said that along with this, people who owe O'Brien money are refusing to pay him back on account of his crimes, while he has also been accused of a number of acts of theft from the local community.
Mr Whyms said that O'Brien had subsequently been proven not to have been involved in those thefts but only after being subject to verbal and physical threats.
O'Brien, a married father with one son, has paid more than €17,000 in compensation to Mr Ford after an independent assessor totalled the compensation to be paid from the thefts.
"Even now, after making full financial recompense, he will always have to carry the burden and the stigma," Mr Whyms said.