A HEROIN addict who snatched a 74-year-old woman's handbag containing the nursing home fees for her 102-year-old father has been sentenced to eight years for this and other offences.
Anthony Cahill (30) of Clarkes Terrace, St James's Walk, Dublin 8, pleaded guilty at Dublin Circuit Criminal Court to robbery on South Circular Road on October 20, 2011.
Detective Garda Declan Boland told Marie Torrens BL, prosecuting, that the victim was walking when she was knocked to the ground by Cahill, who grabbed her bag and ran off with it.
She said the handbag contained €2,500 in cash which was going to be paid towards nursing home fees for her father, aged 102.
In a victim impact statement, the court heard the woman had been left terrified, nervous and afraid to walk around the streets after the incident.
Cahill also pleaded guilty to trying to rob a young Brazilian man's iPhone in Rialto on 8th March 2012, although he denied threatening to stab the man.
He further pleaded guilty to stealing €2,500 in cash, phones, a digital camera, jewellery and iPods from a house on Crumlin Road on March 28, 2012.
The money was going to be used by the homeowner, a recently married Mauritian woman, to pay for college fees.
Cahill also pleaded guilty to stealing a laptop and TV from an apartment at Kearns Place, Kilmainham on March 15, 2012.
Cahill said he was on drugs at the time of the offences and wasn't in his right mind. He apologised to the victims of each offence.
Defence counsel Fiona Murphy BL said drug addiction is at the centre of her client's offences and that he has been in and out of custody for the last ten years.
The accused, who suffers from serious illnesses, has 43 previous convictions including theft, burglary, aggravated burglary and misuse of drugs.
Judge Patrick McCartan noted Cahill was “in the grip of heroin addiction” but that he was obliged to protect the community by re-activating a three-year suspended portion of a previous sentence.
Judge McCartan also sentenced him to five years in jail, to run consecutively, for robbing the pensioner's handbag, which he described as “as mean and nasty a robbery offence as you can get.”
He suspended the final two years of the total sentence and backdated it to May 2012.