Woman guilty of trying to pass herself off as her sister

Sonya Moran tried to open false bank account in Limerick

A woman who fraudulently tried to pass herself off as her sister at a Garda station in order to gain an identification certificate, so she could open a false bank account, has received a three-month suspended jail sentence.

Sonya Moran, of Roxboro Road, Limerick, was convicted of making a false instrument, to wit an ML10 Certification Of Identity, with the intention of using it to induce a bank to accept it as genuine.

Ms Moran (39), was charged under Section 25 of the Criminal Justice (Theft and Fraud) Offences Act.

She was previously jailed for nine months in February 2007 for possession of drugs for sale or supply, and received a six-month sentence the following month for again possessing drugs for sale or supply, the court heard.


Solicitor John Herbert told Limerick District Court, Ms Moran had a "difficult" family background. She had nine previous convictions for drugs offences and theft.

Ms Moran presented herself at Henry Street Garda station on April 24th with her own passport as ID, and sought a ML10 form to be completed by a garda, as in accordance with banking regulations.

Sonya Moran fraudulently signed the form in her sister's name, Carla Moran.

Carla Moran was never charged with any offence and had no hand in her sister’s activities.

Sonya Moran handed the completed form and her own passport to Garda Barry O’Farrell who was dealing with her request.

When Garda O’Farrell questioned her after he noticed irregularities with the application, Ms Moran admitted the details she gave were false, the court heard.

Her solicitor said the charges against her were “far away from high financial fraud” and Ms Moran “didn’t realise how serious it is to present yourself as another”.

However, Sergeant Donal Cronin said once a false bank account is opened "it can be used for any purposes".

“Sonya Moran tried to pass herself off as Carla Moran in order to access a bank account and other financial services.

“There are implications from this for the gardaí and for banking institutions,” Sgt Cronin added.

Judge Marian O’Leary sentenced Ms Moran to three months in jail, but suspended it provided she not reoffend for a period of 12 months.