Fake sex ads woman avoids prison
A WOMAN who posted false sex ads on a classifieds website on behalf of two unwitting people has avoided jail.
Aishling Madden (34) was convicted by a jury earlier this month of four counts of defamation and of two counts of publishing material following a trial.
She had initially admitted posting the messages to the Gumtree website but then claimed a group of people she had brought home posted the offensive messages.
Madden, of Monastery Drive, Clondalkin, Dublin, had originally denied defaming David Henry and Louise Vivace at her home between June 17 and 20, 2006. She also denied a further two counts of publishing material which was grossly offensive, indecent or obscene.
The court heard Madden was "a very fragile person".
Madden's defence counsel said his client had suffered from mental health issues and had to be continuously monitored by her parents, whom she continues to live with.
Judge Patrick McCartan sentenced her to 12 months on each count, but suspended the sentences for three years on condition she complies with the instructions of her medical team.
Sergeant Liam Coogan, of the Computer Crime Investigation Unit, told prosecution counsel that Madden said in an interview she was working as a temporary receptionist for Accenture in May 2006. She said she found Ms Vivace's CV on a computer at her workplace and decided to email it to herself as she thought it was a good example of a receptionist's CV, and that she wanted to study it to improve her own.
Sgt Coogan said Ms Vivace's CV appeared alongside the sexual comments and her contact details on the Gumtree website. He said the CV was also found on a hard drive seized from Madden.
Madden told gardai she had met Mr Henry once when he worked for the Office Angels recruitment company. Sgt Coogan said an email between Mr Henry and Madden was also found on her hard drive.
Madden's defence counsel submitted that "there was no sustained period of harassment" and that his client accepted the verdict of the jury and was sorry for her actions.
"I am very relieved to hear she accepts the verdict of the jury," Judge McCartan said.
"Two innocent people in this case were very meanly targeted and offended for little or no reason."