Women jailed for stealing dresses

DUO HANDED FOUR MONTH SENTENCES

Published 18/09/2012 | 16:48

TWO WOMEN who have a history of thefts were both sentenced to four months in prison for shoplifting at Swords District Court last week.

Lesley Hopkins of Alexander Place in Dublin and Claudine McAuley of Finglas Wood, Finglas, pleaded guilty to the theft of dresses and a suit with a total value of €209.75 from H&M at The Pavillions Shopping Centre in Swords on May 22. Garda Conor Tumbleton told the court that while he and Garda Sean Reidy were at the shopping centre dealing with another incident, the two women, who are known to gardaí, were observed entering H&M clothing store. ' The two women took dresses from the hangers and placed them inside a handbag and left the shop without paying for them,' said Gda. Tumbleton. Gardaí stopped the two women on the Malahide Road and found them in possession of the four H&M dresses and a suit with the tags still on the clothes. The two women were arrested and the items were recovered. Ms. Fiona D'Arcy, solicitor for the two women, said both women entered early guilty pleas. Hopkins (25) has 53 previous convictions and is currently serving a four month term at Mountjoy for theft while McAuley, who is 30, has 40 previous convictions including 13 under the Theft Act. Ms. D'Arcy said McAuley, who has a 12-year-old son, is unemployed and 'struggling financially'. 'She knows it was a stupid thing to do and regrets it,' said Ms. D'Arcy. 'She has learnt her lesson and has a bad history so she knows she is facing a custodial sentence but is asking for one last chance.' Judge Dermot Dempsey said McAuley has been given numerous chances and he is not prepared to allow her a further opportunity. He sentenced her to four months in prison and said he is not prepared to suspend any of the sentence. Ms. D'Arcy said Hopkins, who has a nine-year-old son, is finding it very difficult in prison and is very apologetic for her actions. She said Hopkins is asking not to add to the sentence she is already serving. Judge Dempsey sentenced Hopkins to four months in prison to run concurrent to the sentence she is already serving.

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