Student gets community service after admitting thefts from employer

Judge spares 26 year-old prison sentence after being told he had repaid money in full

The student was working in a shop parttime but repeatedly voided transtactions then stole the money at the end of the shift, the court heard.

The student was working in a shop parttime but repeatedly voided transtactions then stole the money at the end of the shift, the court heard.

 

A university student who stole nearly €7,000 from his newsagent employer to help pay for his Masters course in dispute resolution has received 120 hours of community service.

Eoram Dobnam De Lima (26) regularly voided transactions while working on the till in a Centra store, before taking that amount in cash at the end of his shift.

De Lima, with an address in Newport Street, Dublin, pleaded guilty to three counts of stealing property from Centra in Charlemont Street between November 1st, 2019 and January 15th, 2020. He has no previous convictions.

He stole a total of €6,936 in cash over 742 voided transactions, Dublin Circuit Criminal Court heard.

At a previous sentencing hearing in March 2021, Gerardine Small BL, defending, said De Lima, who is originally from Brazil but has been living and studying in Ireland for the last three to four years, was extremely remorseful and wished to pay the money back, but his passport has been surrendered as part of his bail conditions and he cannot renew his work visa.

Ms Small agreed with Judge Melanie Greally that De Lima is still studying and is still financing his Masters course. She said her client was currently on the Pandemic Unemployment Payment (PUP).

“It might have been better directed to making good the loss to Robert O’Leary than financing his education,” Judge Greally said. “He may not be in a position to enjoy the benefits of that education as a result of this offence.”

On Wednesday Ms Small confirmed that her client had made full restitution to the injured party.

The judge said that in view of the fact De Lima has made restitution to his former employer and has engaged with restorative justice, she would temper the amount of hours of community service she imposed so that it did not interfere unduly with his study and work commitments.

Judge Greally ordered that De Lima complete 120 hours of community service in lieu of 18 months imprisonment.