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Footballer gambled €700 share in handbag snatch plot

A TALENTED footballer took part in a "conspiracy" in which cash and property worth nearly €8,000 were snatched from a bank customer as she queued, a court heard.

Robert Keeley (25) was passed the designer handbag with the money, ran from the scene, then gambled away his €700 share of the proceeds.

Keeley, of Coultry Way, Ballymun, pleaded guilty at Dublin District Court to possession of stolen property at Shantalla Road, Santry on March 30, 2012.

The property, taken previously at AIB, Swords, consisted of €3,630 in cash, a €3,000 Louis Vuitton handbag, a €600 iPhone and a Louis Vuitton purse worth €700.


He had initially been charged with the theft, but that charge, which he denied, was withdrawn by the prosecution.

Questioned by Judge Ann Watkin as to whether the accused was "in a conspiracy" to be able to grab the bag and run, Emmet Nolan, defending, said the accused accepted this.

Keeley, who is jobless, had a "very serious gambling problem", the court heard.

When the defendant went to college, he was offered a scholarship in the US to play football but was unable to take that up because he was caring for his brother.

The case was adjourned for a probation report.