A former Shamrock Rovers scholarship recipient has been given a two year suspended sentence at Dublin Circuit Criminal Court for being in possession of a stolen Cartier watch worth €10,000.
Gary McMenamin (22), who has a keen interest in watches, was travelling to the UK by boat to trade the watch when he was stopped by gardaí.
He initially told gardai the watch belonged to his girlfriend but then said it was offered to him by an acquaintance for €1,500.
McMenamin, of Kilmartin Abbey in Tallaght, Dublin pleaded guilty to possession of the watch at Stena Line at Dublin Port on October 9, 2014.
Sergeant John Stafford told Una Tighe BL, prosecuting McMenamin was a passenger in a car about to board the Stena Line ship to the UK when gardai observed he had the ladies' watch on his right arm and a man's watch on his left arm.
Sgt Stafford said the ladies' watch was stolen following an aggravated burglary in September 2014 in Wicklow but there is no suggestion McMenamin was involved in this burglary.
The owner had purchased the watch for his wife in Spain for €12,000 but it was valued at €10,000 by a Dublin jewellers as it was deemed a second hand watch.
He said McMenamin has six previous road traffic convictions and one conviction for failing to comply with garda direction, all dating back to 2010.
Defence counsel Eoin Lawlor BL said the former St Aidan's Community School student, who won a Shamrock Rovers football scholarship several years ago, was travelling to the UK to trade it for a better watch.
“He has a very keen interest in watches and he recognises that it was a prestigious watch and knows he was reckless,” said Mr Lawlor.
“It's completely out of character for him and he hopes to be one day involved in the trading of watches in a legitimate way but with a conviction he may have to re-consider this,” he said.
Judge Martin Nolan acknowledged that McMenamin had “no hand, act or part” in the aggravated burglary but said he must have suspected the watch was stolen before he bought it.
He sentenced McMenamin to two years in prison but suspended it for two years.