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Catch me if you can - Swindler posed as airline pilot

'Walter Mitty' character obtained loan of €40,000


David Nevin posed as an Etihad Airways pilot as part of his schemes

David Nevin posed as an Etihad Airways pilot as part of his schemes

David Nevin posed as an Etihad Airways pilot as part of his schemes

A "Walter Mitty" character who is a serial fraud offender and convicted stalker pretended to be an airline pilot to obtain a bank loan of over €40,000.

Our exclusive photo shows David Nevin (46) who was busted after a major investigation by detectives from the gardai's Stolen Motor Vehicle Investigation Unit (SMVIU).

Yesterday Nevin, who had lived in a high-end apartment in the Malahide area of the capital, pleaded guilty to a number of theft and fraud-related offences at Dublin Circuit Court.


In a scene straight out of the Hollywood blockbuster Catch Me If You Can, the crook managed to secure tens of thousands of euro in loans after posing as a pilot.

In the film, starring Leonardo DiCaprio playing the real life fraudster Frank Abagnale, the protagonist makes millions through bogus cheques posing as a pilot, doctor and lawyer.

While Nevin's scam did not manage to net him millions, he did secure major loans after posing as a pilot for Etihad Airways.

At yesterday's sentencing hearing, Detective Garda Mark O' Riordan outlined the facts of the case, including an incident in 2017 when he secured a loan from Bank Of Ireland by providing a false AIB bank statement which claimed he was being paid over €8,000 a month working as a pilot for Etihad.

At the time, the convicted swindler was actually unemployed and as soon as obtaining the funds, the loan immediately went into arrears and the current balance on it is €43,472, the court heard.

Det Gda O' Riordan outlined a number of other offences which Nevin pleaded guilty to, including when he secured a 181reg high-end Audi car from Leaseplan by providing it with a false AIB Bank statement and agreeing to pay €1,000 a month for the vehicle.

His false statement showed monthly income of over €3,900 but his actual wage was far less than that as he was being paid €12.50 an hour at the time while working for a security company.

He failed to meet the security downpayment of €2,500 and both cheques he issued for this amount bounced due to lack of funds in his account.

The company got its car back from Nevin after a number of weeks, but because he had driven it for "thousands of kilometres", the company was left €3,796 out of pocket on the value of the car.

Dublin Circuit Court also heard he used "false instruments" in an unsuccessful attempt to obtain a KBC bank personal credit card with a limit of €7,000 in June 2017, but the bank contacted gardai, made a formal complaint and a major investigation began.

The court heard Nevin made two separate representations to a car dealership in Athlone, Co Westmeath, when he attempted to use falsified bank accounts and utility bills to buy high-end Audi cars, but he was unsuccessful on both occasions.

Det Gda O'Riordan agreed that Nevin was fully co-operative and admitted the offences when interviewed by gardai on three occasions when the SMVIU arrested him after building a case against him.

The garda agreed that Nevin gave officers access to the computer he used to scan the fake documents he used for his crimes, which was located in his Marina Village apartment in Malahide.

Nevin's defence counsel told Judge Elma Sheahan her client committed the crimes when he was suffering from "desperate economic circumstances" and that he had a "Walter Mitty" type of personality.

"He was attempting to live a life that was not his," the lawyer said, before stating that a psychological report said that he had nominated himself as a "person of interest" in another garda case in which he had no involvement and was living a "fantasy life".

The lawyer asked the judge to read Nevin's interviews with gardai and pointed out that he had used his own legitimate passport with the false documentation when he committed the various crimes.

Judge Sheahan decided to adjourn sentencing in the case until September 21, after agreeing to read Nevin's interviews with detectives, and he was further remanded in custody, where he has been since March.

While the court heard Nevin had 20 previous criminal convictions, the details of a suspended sentence he received at Dublin Circuit Court in June 2015 were not outlined.

On that occasion he stalked and harassed his former girlfriend for over six months in an attempt to rekindle their relationship.

Nevin sent text messages to Patricia Dardis, phoned her, emailed her, sent faxes to her office, handwritten notes to her home, turned up at her place of work and home and at one point tried to contact the chief executive of the firm where she worked.

Nevin, who is originally from Terryglass, Nenagh, Co Tipperary, pleaded guilty at Dublin Circuit Criminal Court on that occasion to harassment of Ms Dardis from August 2012 to February 2013 at locations in Dublin.

He had contacted Ms Dardis on a daily basis and had also tried to communicate with her 40 times in one day.

Ms Dardis was in a relationship with Nevin from March 2010 until January 2011 and she had helped him secure finance for a car during that time.

When the relationship ended, loan repayments were being deducted from her account and she contacted Nevin in order to get the money repaid.

Nevin has a previous conviction for harassment of another former partner from Cork Circuit Criminal Court in May 2011, for which he was bound to the peace.