A THIEF took a pregnant woman’s purse containing her engagement and wedding rings from the sacristy of a church, a court heard.
John Lynch (43) said “I apologise for the loss of her jewellery and everything else” after he was charged.
A court heard the woman was heavily pregnant at the time of the incident.
Her fingers were swollen and she was keeping her wedding and engagement rings, valued at more than €3,500, in her purse. The jewellery was not recovered.
Judge David McHugh adjourned the matter for six weeks to allow Lynch to bring compensation to court.
Judge McHugh said the rings were valuable to the victim, both from a financial and emotional perspective, and he warned Lynch that sentencing remained at large.
The defendant, of Church Road in Celbridge, Co Kildare, admitted before Blanchardstown District Court to a charge of theft at St Patrick’s Church, Main Street in Celbridge between January 8 and January 11, 2012.
Gda Christopher Fallon said the victim made a complaint to gardai on January 11 saying her purse had been stolen from the church sacristy.
Gda Fallon said Lynch was identified from CCTV footage in the church.
The court heard the purse contained the woman’s gold engagement ring worth €3,300 and a ladies white gold wedding ring worth €590.
The purse also contained a voucher for a department store, valued at €400. The court heard the defendant has 30 previous convictions, mostly for theft-related matters.
Defence lawyer Jennifer Jackson said the property was not returned to the injured party.
She said Lynch, who is unemployed and currently on social welfare, would like to make an effort to bring compensation to court.