Man altered bank statement in attempt to get €160,000 loan

July 29, 2021

A LETTERKENNY man altered a bank statement in attempt to obtain a loan to purchase a farm of land.

Derek McKinney (41) of Knockbrack, Letterkenny, pleaded guilty to an offence under the Criminal Justice (Theft and Fraud Offences) Act, 2001.

McKinney was present at Falcarragh District Court, where his case was heard.

Sergeant Jim Collins told the court that McKinney applied for a €160,000 loan to purchase land on a date between November 1, 2016 and November 30, 2016.

McKinney supplied documents from a UK bank account to support his application.

The court heard that a bank official realised that a previous application was made in May 2016 and noticed that the details, including the account number and balance, had been altered.

Gardaí arrested McKinney, who made full admissions and was fully compliant, Sgt Collins said.

He was charged with using an instrument – the bank statement – which was and which he knew to be, a false instrument, with the intention of inducing another person to accept it as genuine and, by reason of so accepting it, to do some act, or to make some omission, or to provide some service, to the prejudice of that person.

Solicitor for McKinney, Mr Kieran O’Gorman said his client is a 40-year-old father-of-one who is ‘gainfully employed with six men working for him’.

“He altered the figure to substantiate proof,” Mr O’Gorman said. “This was a bank sale and he actually bought the farm. He didn’t have the money in the bank. He ridiculously changed the figure he said he had in the hank.

“He and his brother bought the farm, raising funds by the sale of machinery.

“He admitted it straight away and he didn’t actually get the loan approved.”

“Happily for him, he didn’t get the loan,” said Judge Deirdre Gearty.

“That isn’t really the point. The point is that the nub of the offence is to induce the other person to accept something.”

Judge Gearty applied the Probation Act.