Friday 24 November 2017

€43,000 dole fraud woman gets week to pay it all back

Ralph Riegel

Ralph Riegel

A woman who fraudulently claimed more than €43,000 in dole payments has been allowed a week to repay all the money involved.

Sibyl Montague (33) appeared before Cork District Court as Judge Leo Malone was told that, if he agreed to adjourn the matter for seven days, the entire sum involved would be repaid.

Montague, of Cois Coillte, Tivoli, Cork, pleaded guilty to a total of 17 charges brought following an investigation into the claiming of jobseekers' allowance payments.

She was arrested last Thursday and pleaded guilty to all 17 charges on her first court appearance.

The initial charge outlined that, over a three-month period from July 1, 2008, she stole property, namely a jobseekers' allowance payment of €2,495.42, from the Department of Social Protection.

This was claimed from the department's offices at Hanover Street in Cork.

The next 15 charges outlined similar payment claims over a three-month period, all involving a sum of €2,495.42.

The 17th charge outlined the claim of an amount of €3,743 for a three-month period ending in October 2012.

The total amount referred to across the 17 charges is €43,669.72. Most of the money has already been repaid.

Defence counsel Joe Cuddigan asked Judge Malone to adjourn the matter until March 27.

"We can confirm at that stage that all monies involved have been repaid," he said.

Judge Malone was told by Insp Dermot O'Connor that the State had no objection, and he adjourned the matter until next week.

The court previously heard that the DPP indicated the matter can be dealt with at District Court level if there was a guilty plea.

Otherwise, the matter would have to be dealt with by judge and jury in Cork Circuit Criminal Court.

Irish Independent

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