A NEWTOWNMOUNTKENNEDY man stole €100,000 worth of Dublin Bus tickets he was meant to destroy.
38 year old Brian Merriman of Season Park, Newtown, was working with document-shedding firm, Shred It, and misappropriated the tickets which were being taken out of circulation to be shredded following a price increase by Dublin Bus.
Merriman pleaded guilty at Dublin District Court to stealing the tickets at Dublin Bus, Upper O'Connelll Street on July 23, 2011.
Merriman worked as a driver with Shred It and the company had been hired by Dublin Bus to destroy a batch of old tickets.
Dublin Bus was alerted to the below-cost sale of bus tickets and contacted the Gardai. An investigation was carried out and Merriman's home was raided where tickets and €4,050 in cash were seized.
The court was told that the tickets had been removed by Merriman while he was in a position as a ' trusted employee.'
Between May and July 2011, he appropriated €100,000 worth of tickets which were due to be shredded.
The Dublin Bus investigation was prompted after Dublin Bus suffered a loss of revenue of between €250,000 and €300,000. The wider fraud operation involved stolen tickets being passed on the third parties.
Several shopkeepers have been charged with handling stolen bus tickets, and a co-accused man is currently before the courts over the theft of tickets from Dublin Bus in 2011.
Judge Cormac Dunne ordererd that Merriman carry out 200 hours' community service instead of an eight month prison sentence. He was also ordered to return the siezed cash to Dublin Bus.