A former heroin addict with “a series of previous convictions” for burglary avoided a jail sentence in the District Court this week (February 16 ) after the judge heard how he was finishing up a foundation course in business studies and was hoping to attend the AIT next autumn.
Aiden Lynch (26 ) with an address at Cedarwood Drive, Athlone was in court to plead guilty to possession of a Stanley knife, and the theft of a radio, satellite navigation system, and DVDs worth a total of €400 from a car parked at Cushla, Monksland on the night of November 30.
Defending solicitor, Mr Paul Connellan, explained to the court how his client had started a methadone course two and a half years ago, and was attending a foundation business course, which was finishing in June.
“He hopes to go to the AIT next September to continue his studies,” said Mr Connellan.
“He is at somewhat of a loss as to why he put all this in jeopardy,” he said.
“On the night in question he was drinking and on valium and had been on his way home. The vast majority of the goods were recovered, and Mr Lynch has paid compensation for the balance.”
Mr Connellan conceded his client accepted that his previous convictions made him likely to face a custodial sentence, but argued the Welfare and Probation Service might be a better option.
Judge David Anderson accepted this and remanded Lynch on continuing bail until May 10 for a Probation Report, and suggested the WPS might lean towards a Community Service Order.