Sunday 25 August 2019

Mortgage application forged by couple


(stock photo)
(stock photo)

Seán McCárthaigh

A couple have been spared jail after forging documents to apply for a mortgage because they believed they would never otherwise qualify for a housing loan.

Judge Sinéad Ní Chúlacháin said Clare Ellis (34) and Gareth Boyle (32) did not realise they were engaging in criminal activity in what was "not a highly sophisticated" effort to deceive a bank.

Sentencing them to community service, the judge described the engaged couple's case as "highly unusual".

The judge said she also recognised "the pressure and intolerable stress" placed on many families trying to pay for housing.

Ellis and Boyle, both of Gurteen Avenue, Ballyfermot, had pleaded guilty at Dublin Circuit Criminal Court to a charge of attempting to obtain services by deception from KBC Bank. The couple, who have two young children, were looking to buy the home of a deceased relative.

Detective Garda James Walker said Ms Ellis had completed an application form for a €239,000 mortgage in the Maynooth branch of KBC on March 29, 2016 and also provided a P60, payslips and a salary certificate.

However, a KBC official became suspicious about the validity of the documents and gardaí were notified. Det Gda Walker said they were "extremely cooperative and contrite" when he called to their home on August 14, 2016.

The court heard they admitted the documents were false but explained although they could afford the loan repayments they knew they would have difficulty in obtaining an actual mortgage.

Det Gda Walker said the couple had obtained the services of a "creative accountant" who was now the subject of a wider Garda investigation.

Irish Independent

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