€400 fine for Athy man who took items for ransom

Man brought compensation to court appearance

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€400 fine for Athy man who took items for ransom

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A man who was before Athy District Court last Tuesday for trespassing at a friend’s house and taking a Playstation and laptop as a ransom for money owed to him paid €80 in compensation, and was fined €400.

Patrick Hickey (27) with an address listed as 1800 William Pierce Tce, Castledermot, came to the attention of gardai on August 27 last at Ballyroe, Athy.

The court, at a previous hearing on November 28, heard that the defendant, who pleaded guilty, went to the injured party’s house because he was owed some money. He spoke with the injured party and there was a row over the money owed.

The injured party then left the house and the defendant entered and took a laptop and Playstation as a ransom for the money owed to him. Both items were later recovered by gardai, however the laptop had to be repaired at a cost of €80.

The court heard that the defendant accidently dropped the laptop on his way out of the house.

“My client was owed money so he took the property with the intention of giving it back when the money was paid,” said solicitor Frank Taafe. “He is an unemployed father of two. He meant to return the items when he got his money back.”

The defendant had one previous conviction for theft of four cans of beer. He was fined €400 and was given six months to pay the fine.