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Businessman who stole food hadn't eaten in days

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The two women were living in a house attached to St Brendan's Psychiatric Hospital in Grangegorman

The two women were living in a house attached to St Brendan's Psychiatric Hospital in Grangegorman

The two women were living in a house attached to St Brendan's Psychiatric Hospital in Grangegorman

AN ENTREPRENEUR who became destitute after his business failed had not eaten for three days when he assaulted a shop assistant as he tried to steal food, a court heard.

Farzad Tavakolipour (47) struck the employee in the face when he was confronted for trying to shoplift groceries for the second time.

Dublin District Court heard that a home improvement business he started up "didn't go anywhere" after a €5,000 website investment. He was under financial pressure at the time of the offence.

A judge adjourned the case for payment of €500 compensation to the victim.

Tavakolipour, of Inverness Road, Fairview, pleaded guilty to stealing groceries and assaulting a man at Tesco, Fairview, last August 17.

The court heard that gardai on patrol came across the employee who was holding his face and seemed dazed.

A manager said the defendant had tried to steal a number of items, then struck the victim in the face with a closed fist during a struggle when staff tried to stop him.

The victim suffered swelling and complained of soreness but did not seek any medical attention or suffer any serious injury.

The goods were recovered but the defendant had left.

Gardai viewed footage from an earlier incident on August 5 when goods were also taken but not recovered.

recklessness

A garda called to the defendant's address for another matter and realised the defendant was the same person. The court heard he was apprehended due to "good detective work".

Tavakolipour cooperated and admitted that a struggle happened but denied punching anyone.

Defence solicitor Stephen O'Mahony said it was admitted that contact was made.

The accused stole because he had not eaten for three days and was "quite destitute".

He maintained that security guards were holding him outside, there was a struggle and in the course of that "there was a strike".

"It was more recklessness," Mr O'Mahony said. "It wasn't his intention to strike him - he got a surprise when he was grabbed and reacted badly."

The court heard that gardai did not believe the assault had been pre-meditated.

The defendant had come to Ireland as an English language student from Iran in 1989.

He married an Irish woman and became a citizen, but the marriage ended in 2000. He tried to set up a home improvement business, investing €5,000 in a website, but the business "didn't go anywhere" and he "lost lots of money", Mr O'Mahony said.

He had no money for food when he carried out the thefts.

Judge Anthony Halpin ordered €500 compensation be paid to the victim and adjourned the case to June 24.

hnews@herald.ie


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