money fool  | 

Man who let his account be used for money laundering initially claimed he was hacked

He accepted then that he had, in fact, given his bank details to a third party.

James Mohite (23) of Clonuske Green, Hamlet Lane, Balbriggan, pleaded guilty to one count of money laundering. Pic Collins Courts

Claire Henry

A Dublin man has been given a two-year suspended sentence for allowing his bank account be used for money laundering.

At a previous sitting of Dublin Circuit Criminal Court, James Mohite (23) of Clonuske Green, Hamlet Lane, Balbriggan, pleaded guilty to one count of money laundering.

Detective Garda David Jennings told Karl Moran BL, prosecuting, that a Dublin company received an email from who they believed was their supplier informing them of a change in bank details.

The bank details were updated, and an invoice for €6,370 was paid into the new account details. Two other payments of just under €1,000 were also paid into the account of Mohite on a separate occasion.

Det Gda Jennings's told the court that the company received an email with a statement of account attached, and the owner of the company disagreed with the amount outstanding on the account.

The court heard that the company owner contacted the supplier, and it was at this stage that it was realised that money had been paid into the wrong account.

Gardaí were contacted by the company owner and were furnished with bank documents relating to the account.

During the search of Mohite's home in Balbriggan, gardaí found a bank document linking the defendant to the bank account number used in the fraudulent payments.

Mohite later told gardaí that his bank account had been hacked and someone had used his account for money laundering. He accepted then that he had, in fact, given his bank details to a third party.

Det Gda Jennings told the court that he accepts that Mohite did not send the emails but allowed his bank details to be used for money laundering purposes.

The court heard that all money transferred into the account had been either withdrawn using ATMs or used for online transactions. Mohite has one previous conviction for driving without insurance.

Brian Lindsay, BL defending, told the court that his client was a student at the time of the offence and that he was approached by a third party and asked to supply his bank details. He was told he would be paid €1000 if he did so. He said his client is now in full time employment as the manager of a pizzeria.

Several character references were handed into court on behalf on Mohite.

Judge Elma Sheahan said it was the court's view that the appropriate sentence for this crime was three years; however, she must consider the mitigating factors before finalising the sentence.

Judge Sheahan said the mitigating factors were the early guilty plea entered by Mohite, his lack of previous relevant convictions and the fact that he comes from a strong family unit and that his family are ashamed of his actions.

Judge Sheahan sentenced him to two years in prison but suspended it in full for two years under the condition that Mohite keep the peace and be of good behaviour for two years.


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