Woman conned into buying stolen car she saw online
A woman was conned into buying a stolen car for €4,300 cash after she saw it advertised on Done Deal, a court has heard.
Gardai managed to track down the seller, Stewart Crosbie (45), from a smart phone photo of him taken by the woman's suspicious friend.
Garda Martina Drew said Crosbie later admitted he had passed the money to a third party, to whom he owed a drug debt.
Crosbie, of St Cronans Grove, Swords, Dublin pleaded guilty at Dublin Circuit Criminal Court to possessing a stolen Toyota Vitz at Grange Road, Clonsilla on January 24, 2015.
He has 25 previous convictions and is serving a partially suspended three year sentence for a similar offence committed in November 2014.
Gda Drew revealed that the smart phone photo was the only thing connecting Crosbie to the Toyota Vitz crime as forensic tests on other documents were unsuccessful.
Judge Martin Nolan imposed an eight month sentence to run consecutive to the time he is serving, as he was on bail when he carried out this offence.
Gda Drew told Karl Finnegan BL, prosecuting, the woman and her friend had agreed to meet the person advertising the Toyota on donedeal.ie. They were met in a car park by Crosbie, who claimed his name was Noel and that he was the brother of the seller.
Crosbie handed the woman the car's NCT and registration certificates and allowed her to go for a test drive. He agreed to let her take it home for €4,300 cash instead of €4,500 as advertised, because he had only one key for the car.
Gda Drew said the woman discovered she had been conned when she got home and noticed the vehicle's registration did not match those on the documents. She tried unsuccessfully to call Crosbie and then went to gardai.
Gda Drew told Mr Finnegan that Crosbie made admissions after arrest and said he got involved because he owed money for a drug debt. Gda Drew agreed with Luigi Rea BL, defending, that Crosbie has no other cases pending against him.
Mr Rea submitted to Judge Nolan that his client was now alcohol and drug free and had been working in the prison shop. Judge Nolan commented that the offence was “an underhand crime and real people have sustained a loss”.
By Aoife Nic Ardghail