Dublin man unlawfully claimed €19k in dole payments

CourtsBy Sunday World
William Connolly
William Connolly

A DUBLIN man, who has pleaded guilty to unlawfully claiming more than €19,000 in dole payments, has had sentencing adjourned to allow time for a probation report to be prepared.

William Connolly (38) of Old County Glen, Crumlin has entered a guilty plea to the benefit fraud after a prosecution was brought by the Department of Social Protection. 

Prosecution solicitor Edel Haughton told Judge John O'Neill at Dublin District Court that there were six summonses before the court which related to the usual circumstances of working while claiming the Jobseeker's Allowance. The total amount was €19,305 and €2,200 has been repaid. 

He had been paying back €50 a week but since March had increased the repayments to €80 a week. At the current rate it will take more than four years. The man told the court he hoped to be able to increase payments and that he is back in work. 

Judge John O'Neill was told he had no prior criminal convictions. He adjourned the case until July for a pre-sentence probation report to be obtained.

The offence, on conviction, can also result in a fine of up to €2,500 and a possible six-month sentence in addition to having to repay the social welfare authorities. They can also continue to recover money owed after criminal proceedings have concluded.