Vodafone boss charged with stealing €2m over four years
A FORMER senior executive at Vodafone Ireland is to stand trial charged with stealing almost €2m from the company over a four-year period.
Niall Barron (40), who had held the position of head of corporate financial services at the telecoms company, appeared at Dublin District Court to face 42 charges under the Theft and Fraud Offences Act.
He was arrested by detectives from the Garda Bureau of Fraud Investigation in Dublin city-centre yesterday morning.
Detective Garda Stephen Niland told Judge Denis McLoughlin that the accused, who has an address at Ard na Cuan in Wexford Town, Co Wexford, "made no reply to any of the charges".
It is alleged the offences occurred at Vodafone's headquarters in Leopardstown in Co Dublin from 2003 until 2007.
He faces one charge of attempted theft and two for attempted deception; the remaining counts are split between theft of various sums totalling €1,983,000 from the company, and deception by inducing Vodafone to make payments to named business entities for his own gain.
Det Gda Niland told Judge McLoughlin that the DPP has directed "trial on indictment", meaning the case is to go forward for trial at the Circuit Court at a later stage.
There was no objection to bail and defence solicitor Dara Robinson told Judge McLoughlin that his client had already surrendered his passport.
Mr Robinson also said his client was consenting to a seven-week adjournment.
Mr Barron, dressed in jeans, polo shirt and jacket, remained silent during the hearing yesterday and there has been no indication yet as to how he will plead to the charges.
Judge McLoughlin remanded him on bail pending the preparation of a book of evidence and ordered him to appear again in September.
Bail was set in Mr Barron's own bond of €1,000 and he was ordered to sign on every Tuesday and Friday at Wexford Garda Station, to notify gardai if he is changes address and not to apply for any new travel documents.