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'Reckless' student's account was used to transfer stolen €5k

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DCU student Nuschka Babela. Photo: Collins Courts

DCU student Nuschka Babela. Photo: Collins Courts

DCU student Nuschka Babela. Photo: Collins Courts

A student whose bank account was used to transfer a stolen €5,000 had been "reckless" when she got involved, a court has heard.

Nuschka Babela (19), described as "highly intelligent", was paid €240 after the larger sum was lodged from someone else's illegally-accessed account.

Dublin District Court heard the €240 was for her college fees. The rest of the cash was withdrawn and given to an unidentified person and there was a "much larger" garda investigation into the fraud.

Babela, of St Brigid's Road Lower, Drumcondra, pleaded guilty to handling stolen property - the €5,000.

Judge Ann Ryan struck the case out, leaving her without a criminal record.

Gda John Niland told the court that €5,000 entered the accused's bank account on July 25 last year.

It was then withdrawn in several transactions at ATMs, with €240 handed over to Babela and the rest of the funds given to an unidentified person.

Babela had no previous convictions.

The accused's ex-partner had told her he would pay her €240 for college fees, her lawyer said.

Unidentified

She expected that sum to come into her account, but a much larger sum came in and another, unidentified, person was the beneficiary of the extra money, the lawyer added.

"She was not aware of what was going on at the time," he said, adding that Babela pleaded guilty because she accepted she was reckless.

Gda Niland agreed that the defendant was unaware what was happening. She made full admissions in relation to the offence.

Babela was "never involved in anything like this before" and would not come to the attention of gardai again, her lawyer said.

She was highly intelligent and had a good future, but had been involved with the wrong set of people at the time and had since distanced herself from them.

Babela was doing very well at DCU and was undertaking an internship as part of her course.

The court heard the holder of the illegally-accessed account was reimbursed by the bank.

The accused found herself in "unfortunate circumstances", Judge Ryan said.

"I think she has realised the error of her ways," she added, before striking the case out.


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