Shop worker caught at airport after taking s45k from office safeGRAB: Valerie Shaw admitted stealing from Superquinn

Conor Gallagher

A SUPERQUINN employee was arrested in Dublin Airport the day after she stole €45,000 from the company safe, Dublin Circuit Criminal Court has heard.

Valerie Shaw (52) claimed her ex-boyfriend had stolen €100,000 from her, forcing her to move back in with her ex-husband.

She said she stole the money from the supermarket so she would not have to continue living with her ex-husband.

Shaw, of Woodvale Avenue, Blanchardstown, pleaded guilty to the theft of €45,548 from Superquinn, Main Street, Blanchardstown, on February 6, 2010. She will face sentence in May before Judge Patricia Ryan.

Garda Stephen Byrne told Kerida Naidoo, prosecuting, that Shaw worked in the cash office of the supermarket and had access to the safe.

On February 6, a manager noticed the cash missing and called gardai. CCTV footage showed Shaw alone in the cash office. She placed her handbag in front of the safe and filled it with cash in various denominations.

Garda Byrne made several efforts to track her down and eventually found her in Dublin Airport the next day.

She was going through the departures area to the Airside part of the building when she was arrested.


She told gardai in an interview she had not planned the theft and that it was "completely impulsive".

She made detailed admissions and estimated that she stole around €43,000.

Laurence Masterson, defending, said Shaw shared a home with her ex-husband and that relations with him were poor.

"I just looked at the safe and thought, 'if I had that money, I wouldn't have to go home'," she told gardai. Mr Masterson said that after Shaw had split up with her husband, he had bought her out of her share of their home for €130,000.

She began going out with a new partner who later "made off" with €97,000 of this, forcing her to move back in with her former husband.

Counsel said his client was very co-operative with gardai and has no other convictions. He said she suffers from depression.

Mr Masterson added that Shaw had worked all her life and has five children and strong family support.

The court heard all the money had been recovered except for a small amount which Shaw had spent on a hotel the night before her arrest.

Judge Ryan remanded her on bail and ordered a probation report be prepared on her before sentencing.