Tuesday 27 September 2016

Pensioner burglar (66) told victims he was from Irish Water before thefts

Andrew Phelan

Published 23/09/2016 | 09:50

George Courtier
George Courtier

A pensioner has admitted posing as an employee of Irish Water so he could burgle Dublin businesses.

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George Courtier (66) stole from a restaurant, shops and a health clinic when given "free rein" to check plumbing, which he falsely claimed he was doing on behalf of the water company.

Judge Bryan Smyth adjourned sentencing when Courtier admitted a series of theft charges at Dublin District Court.

Gda Kevin Bambrick said he was called to Eurosaver on Talbot Street last January 16.

Courtier had told staff he worked for Irish Water and was there to check the plumbing.

Staff showed Courtier into a changing area and bathroom and he was "let go about his business".

He left after 10 minutes, and 90 minutes later a staff member noticed his iPhone was missing from his jacket. Courtier was identified on CCTV.

Gardai went to the accused's then address at Harcourt Street and found a stolen iPhone.

Wallet

Courtier went to a restaurant on Dame Street on the same day and said he was "an employee of Irish Water and was checking pipes and plumbing".

While there, he went to a staff area and stole €100 in cash and 7,000 rupees, which were worth about €95.

On October 19, 2015 he went to an ice cream parlour on Grafton Street and said he was a contractor for Irish Water.

He again asked to check pipes, and in the kitchen he made several attempts to open a bag on a bench. He made off with a wallet with €20 cash.

Courtier removed a purse from a drawer at a health clinic on Abbey Street on September 1, 2015, after again posing as an Irish Water worker.

Courtier, with an address at Lord Edward Street, also admitted other burglaries in the city centre, including one at the Royal College of Surgeons, St Stephen's Green, on October 19, 2015.

He claimed to be a contract cleaner and rooted around in lockers, but nothing was taken.

Courtier had 119 previous convictions and would pay compensation from pension arrears he was due, said his solicitor, Aine Flynn.

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