Man who overheard woman was due to collect €16,000 from bank jailed for theft

Thief captured on CCTV inside Artane branch in Dublin while bank teller asked customer to return next day to collect cash

In a ruling on Wednesday, the judge set a headline sentence of five to six years but reduced this to four.

A Dublin man who overheard a woman’s conversation with a bank teller and returned the following day to steal from her has been sentenced to four years in jail.

Joseph Joyce (31) was captured on CCTV inside an AIB branch in Artane, Dublin, on August 26th, 2019, while a bank teller was asking a woman customer to return the next day to collect €16,000 in cash.

The woman returned to the bank the following day and while stopped at traffic lights on her drive home, a man smashed her car window and stole her handbag containing cash, jewellery and other items.

Joyce, of Springdale Road, Raheny, Dublin 5, initially took a trial date but pleaded guilty last month to one count of theft at Oscar Traynor Road, Kilmore in Dublin on August 27th, 2019.


In a ruling at Dublin Circuit Criminal Court on Wednesday, Judge Martin Nolan set a headline sentence of five to six years but reduced this to four on account of Joyce’s efforts at rehabilitation and his family circumstances.

Garda Pierce O’Dwyer told Jane Murphy, prosecuting, that the woman withdrew €16,000 in cash from AIB in Artane on the day in question and was driving home, followed by Joyce and a co-accused in a Ford Focus.

While she was stopped at a red light, one of the men got out of the car behind her and approached the passenger side of her car.

Wearing a yellow Marigold glove on one hand, he smashed the passenger window with a hammer and grabbed the woman’s handbag while shouting at her.

The handbag contained the €16,000 in cash, an iPhone worth €1,200, another sum of $2,000, along with €250 worth of vouchers and jewellery estimated to be worth €200.

The perpetrators’ car then made a U-turn and drove off and witnesses at the scene called 999.

Gardaí later stopped the Ford Focus in Clonshaugh as it had no tax displayed and discovered false registration plates on the ground beside the vehicle.

Joyce’s wife had driven to collect him in a black BMW and when this car was searched, gardaí recovered €1,200 in fresh banknotes.

This sum was returned to the victim, who remained at a loss for the remainder of the cash and the other items stolen.

Joyce has 110 previous convictions.

The court heard he is serving a four-year sentence which is due to expire in January 2026.

Joyce is from a Traveller background, left school at the age of 12 and developed a drug and alcohol addiction in his teens, the court heard.

The court heard he has addressed his addictions, attended a treatment centre and is doing very well in Mountjoy Prison.

The judge said the offence had had a profound impact on the injured party, who was terrified, and she had suffered substantial losses.

He said theft in the context of violence was a serious matter, but Joyce had taken steps to change his life and a probation report was optimistic for his future.