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An acquaintance was conned out of €56k by a gambler

Judge calls the 48-year-intricate old’s two-year fraud a “sad case” and sentences him to prison.

A gambling addict was sentenced to two and a half years in prison for defrauding a friend of €56,000 that he had received from his deceased mother in a complex two-year con.

In the case of Thomas O’Connell at Cork Circuit Criminal Court, Judge Helen Boyle handed down a three-year sentence with the final six months suspended.

O’Connell, 48, of 14 Redbarn Cottages, Youghal, Co. Cork, who is originally from Cork City, committed the fraud, according to Detective Garda Stephen Fuller. O’Connell is from Cork City.

He entered a guilty plea to a number of sample counts while facing 260 charges of theft by deceit between January 16, 2017, and January 17, 2019.

The accused spent a lot of time gambling and drank 20 to 30 cans of beer every day. She mentioned how he helped his daughter and grandson in some way.

Work acquaintances

The 66-year-old victim first encountered O’Connell at work roughly 20 years ago when he moved to Cork City.

Thomas O’Connell started approaching him for loans when his mother passed away. Leaving him a bequest of $56,000, according to Det Gda Fuller. He granted them to him, but he frequently came back in search of new loans. It was agreed that they would be compensated.

“The victim gave him his account information to make loan repayment easier.”

O’Connell, however, started a fraud that allowed him to steal the victim’s money indefinitely until it was all gone.

When calling his victim, O’Connell pretended to be a well-known Cork lawyer and informed him that he and O’Connell were being investigated by the Criminal Assets Bureau (CAB), and that if payments to two accounts set up by O’Connell did not continue, CAB would take action against the victim.

Until the end of the two-year period, the solicitor was unaware that he was being impersonated in connection with the made-up CAB probe.

The victim told the solicitor over the phone that he was unable to make the payments any longer.

He was given an invitation to come to the lawyer’s office and told that it appeared he had been duped because the lawyer had never gotten in touch with him.

He advised the victim to call An Garda Sochána right away, which the victim and solicitor both did.

It was determined that O’Connell’s personal bank account and the Boyle Sports account were the two accounts. To which the payments totaling €56,000 were made.

The payments ranged from €100 to €1,000 and were somewhat above €200 on average.

“Contact was virtually everyday, occasionally more than once on a given day. O’Connell acknowledged to taking €56,000 and impersonating [the solicitor], according to Det Gda Fuller.