Businessman and St Vincent de Paul volunteer went on robbing spree in nightclub

November 28, 2017

A businessman who works voluntarily with St Vincent de Paul has been ordered to pay his own charity €1,000 after going on a stealing spree at a nightclub.

Gearoid Knight stole two iPhones, a lady’s handbag and bank cards during a disco in Co Donegal.

Knight, who manages a staff of 25 people at a service station in Co Laois, stole the handbag and then went into the toilets of the Voodoo in Letterkenny and emptied out the contents.

He stuffed the gold handbag down the back of the toilet.

However, what Knight did not know was that the owner of the handbag, Justine Fisher had spotted him stealing the bag.

When 25-year-old Knight emerged from the toilet, he was apprehended by security staff.

The accused, of Old Pound, Ballybrittas, Co Laois, appeared at Letterkenny District Court charged with a range of offences including stealing goods and handling stolen goods on November 11th last.

The court was told that Knight, who had no previous convictions, was attending a friend’s birthday party in Letterkenny.

He said he had no explanation as to why he stole the items but said he had too much to drink.

However, Judge Paul Kelly said there was some element of pre-planning to it.

He told Knight that if any one of his 25 employees had stolen from his company then they would be let go.

He told Knight’s solicitor, Mr Kieran Dillon “I’m trying to get into the mindset of somebody with all your client’s advantages and background that would make him take a handbag two phones and bank cards.

“There was an element here of planning or preparation to this. It didn’t just fall into his lap. There was a conscious set of actions.”

Solicitor Mr Dillon said his client’s parents were also heavily involved with St Vincent de Paul.

“He is embarrassed and ashamed of what happened. He is here and is anxious to plead guilty. He had been drinking a lot more than he normally would.

“He is heavily involved in the community and this is something is simply can’t explain. He is very anxious to make amends.”

The court was also told that another victim, Mr Ian Reid, claimed that a bank card which he had in his pocket had been later found in Knight’s wallet.

Judge Kelly said that because the accused had no previous convictions and that he had met the charge at the first possible opportunity, he would deal with the charges in a certain way.

He ordered Knight to pay a donation of €1,000 to St Vincent de Paul in Letterkenny and struck out the charges.