Man losing battle with alcohol sent to jail following cider theft

A man with a serious history of alcoholism had a suspended sentence of four months reactivated and received a further one month in jail for thefts of cider when he appeared at Galway District Court this week.

John Wall (55 ) with an address at Fairgreen Hostel, Galway, had been arrested on foot of a bench warrant the morning of the court sitting last Monday. Standing before Judge Mary Fahy, Wall entered a plea of guilty to the two counts of theft against him.

Inspector Brendan Carroll told the court that on Valentine’s Day, February 14 last, Wall was observed entering a city centre Dunnes Stores and stole 18 cans of cider, valued at €25, and the property was never recovered. Then six days later, on February 20, Wall was again arrested after stealing a further 25 cans of cider.

Defence solicitor Adrian MacLynn said his client, who is originally from Bruree, Co Limerick, has had a difficulty with drink throughout his life.

“He is losing his battle with alcoholism,” admitted Mr MacLynn, who added that Wall requires immediate medical attention before asking the court to be as lenient as possible.

Wall has numerous previous convictions, more than 67, with the last one imposed on February 2, 2011, for which he received a four month suspended senstence.

Following a short adjournment Mr MacLynn further explained to Judge Fahy that Wall is “what is known commonly as an out and out alcoholic, the worst condition I have seen in a long time”.

“I have to reactivate the sentence,” said Judge Fahy, who then reactivated and imposed the four month sentence for the previous conviction. Regarding the most recent charges Judge Fahy convicted Wall and imposed a one month sentence, to run consecutively, for one count of theft while a one month sentence, to run concurrently, was imposed for the second count. Leave to appeal was also granted.


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