herald

Saturday 21 October 2017

EYESIGHT Man 'unfit to DO community service'

A YOUNG man has claimed he has been unable to complete community service since his eyesight was damaged by an exploding object at a bonfire.

Chad Redmond (22) was ordered to carry out the community service after a breach of the peace outside a Dublin pub.

A court heard that Redmond has been unable to read the letters he was sent by the Probation Service due to his poor eyesight.

Judge David McHugh agreed to vary a community service order and imposed a two-month sentence suspended for one year.

The defendant, of Belclare Park, Ballymun, had previously admitted to threatening and abusive behaviour. The offence, contrary to the Public Order Act, took place at The Deputy Mayor, Meakstown, Finglas, on January 20 last year.

Redmond had been ordered by Judge McHugh to complete 80 hours' community service in lieu of two months in prison.

The matter came before Blanchardstown District Court after a probation officer said Redmond had completed only 37 of the allocated hours.

tREATMENT

The court heard he last completed community service in March.

Defence solicitor Simon Fleming said the defendant has eyesight difficulties and was unable to read the letters the Probation Service sent to him.

Mr Fleming said there was an incident on Mother's Day when an object exploded in Redmond's face while he was at a bonfire.

He said Redmond had suffered difficulties with his eyesight ever since, and is receiving ongoing medical treatment.

Mr Fleming told the judge that due to his eyesight difficulties, it is unlikely that Redmond will be able to complete the community service.

The solicitor also said that Redmond has no other matters before the court.

Judge McHugh said that in the "unique circumstances" of the case before him, he was willing to impose a suspended sentence in lieu of community service.

hnews@herald.ie

Ex-charity man pays €871k tax, avoids jail

A FORMER charity worker has avoided prison after he failed to make tax returns on €1.2m he earned while bringing athletes to Ireland to raise money for a US arthritis foundation.

A court heard Robert O'Sullivan (63) has reached a settlement with the Revenue to repay €871,000 including interest and penalties and that he has paid most of this.

Judge Desmond Hogan noted the extensive character references handed in on the man's behalf. He said the accused had faced up to matters "in an honourable way" and does not deserve to go to prison.

Judge Hogan imposed a two-year term which he suspended in full on condition O'Sullivan keeps the peace for 12 months.

O'Sullivan, of Grange Wood, Rathfarnham, pleaded guilty at Dublin Circuit Criminal Court to making incorrect tax returns on dates in 2005.

Aidan Murphy, a higher executive officer in the Revenue Commissioners, told John Byrne BL, prosecuting, that O'Sullivan's tax affairs first came under scrutiny in July 2008.

At the time he held two credit union accounts and was told his tax affairs relating to his 2005 income were under examination.

In September 2008 he went to the Revenue Commissioners claiming he had "nothing to hide". He said he would co-operate fully with the investigation and provided them with a completed statement of affairs for himself and his wife.

property

He said he had been a taxi driver since 2002, having retired from Eircom. He received €118,000 on his retirement which he lodged in his credit union account and he later bought a property in Spain.

O'Sullivan said he began to work for the Arthritis Foundation of American in 1998 and opened an account in the name of Robert O'Sullivan Arthritis Foundation.

He said his role was to arrange accommodation and other facilities for athletes coming from America to participate in the Dublin City Marathon on behalf of the foundation.

He said he worked in a voluntary capacity and the arrangement ended in 2006 when the group stopped sending athletes to Ireland.

An officer said €1,270,267 was later withdrawn from this Arthritis Foundation account and lodged to O'Sullivan's personal account, while between November 2005 and January 2006, €905,762 was transferred from this account into a Spanish account.

He told counsel that a statement from O'Sullivan's Arthritis Foundation account showed that in August 2002 there were withdrawals of just over €1.27m and the closing balance was €259,820.

Mr Murphy said Revenue considered the €905,796 transferred to the Spanish account to be a profit. He said it was concluded that O'Sullivan's total taxable income for the purposes of making returns was €1.2m.

hnews@herald.ie

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