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Arrest warrant issued for 15-year-old boy who stole thousands worth of goods

CourtsBy Tom Tuite
Arrest warrant issued for 15-year-old boy who stole thousands worth of goods

A JUDGE has ordered the arrest of a 15-year-old boy who did not turn up to face sentencing for theft of €3,600 worth of clothes and electronic goods.

The then 13-year-old boy was brought to steal €1,300 worth of clothes by an older relative, who then abandoned him when gardai caught up with them, the Dublin Children's Court has heard.

A probation report was furnished to the court yesterday but the teenager, who had already been warned he faced a possible sentence, did not turn up for the hearing. Judge John O'Connor issued a bench warrant for his arrest.

The teen had pleaded guilty earlier to trespassing in a manner that would cause fear at the Palatine Father's religious society's premises in Dundrum in Dublin on May 14 last.

He also admitted stealing €1,300 worth of menswear from the Hollister shop at Dundrum Town Centre on June 4, 2014.

His remaining charges were for theft and burglary from a Co Carlow cash and carry, where he stole phones and a tablet computer with a total value of €2,200 in April 2014.

A delay in his case was result of bench warrants for not attending his earlier court dates and when arrested again in May this year for trespassing he had been trying to flee from gardai.

The court heard that on June 4, 2014, gardai responded to a reported theft at the Dundrum Shopping Centre. A car was stopped nearby but the driver fled leaving the boy and a large quantity of clothing.

When charged, the teenager told a garda: "I was made do that theft."

The Co Kildare teenager, who was accompanied to his previous court hearing, by his mother and his solicitor, pleaded guilty to all charges.

Defence solicitor Michelle Finan had said during a hearing in May that the boy was impressionable and under the influence of an older relative who had been the driver of the car. The teenager made admissions when arrested.

The court heard he already has six criminal convictions for two thefts,  failing to appear in court, failing to give a Garda his name and address contrary the Public Order Act, a burglary and possessing a knife as a weapon for which he was placed on supervised probation last year.

Ms Finan said her client's family had been homeless and his mother had been in an abusive relationship at the time.

They have since been rehoused and "things are looking hopeful", the solicitor had said, adding that the boy has been out of school for the past two years but there are efforts to get him back into education.

She said the boy, who sat silently throughout his previous hearing, is now getting involved in football and "trying to get back in to some lifestyle where he has a future".

Judge O'Connor noted most of the boy's offences went back to 2014 but there was the incident earlier in May where the teen trespassed while trying to dodge gardai.

He had said that was not a good sign. He had warned the teenager that if a bad probation report was furnished to the court he faced the risk of being detained.

A welfare report on him last month was described in court as partially positive.

The boy has also been barred from the D14, D16 and D18 areas.