Saturday 24 March 2018

Soldier withdrew €13k from ATM after bank glitch

(stock photo)
(stock photo)

A soldier who fraudulently withdrew more than €13,000 when Ulster Bank experienced a software failure more than five years ago will be left without a conviction if he makes a contribution to charity.

Thomas Brannigan (32) made 45 cash withdrawals from an Ulster Bank ATM in Tallaght on one day in June 2012.

Due to a glitch in the bank's computer system, he was able to take a total of €13,250 from his account even though he only had €500 in it.

A court heard that Brannigan had since repaid all the money.

Judge John Lindsay said he would leave Brannigan without a conviction if he donated €500 to the Irish Handicapped Children's Pilgrim Trust.

The defendant, of Parkhill Close, Tallaght, had admitted before Tallaght District Court to more than 40 counts of theft.

Garda Keith Gorman previously said Brannigan stole the money from Ulster Bank on June 22, 2012, when a computer system failure meant customers could withdraw cash even if their accounts did not have sufficient funds in them.

Gda Gorman said Brannigan used his ATM card to withdraw small amounts of cash, from €250 to €300.

The withdrawals all took place at the ATM machine at Dunnes Stores, Kilnamanagh Shopping Centre.


The court heard Brannigan had never been in trouble before and defence solicitor Michael Hennessy said all the money had been repaid.

Mr Hennessy said Brannigan had served for more than 12 years in the Irish Army and had the rank of corporal.

He added the defendant hadn't been in trouble before or since the incident, which he described as "opportunistic".

He also said Brannigan had made full admissions and pleaded guilty at an early stage.

Mr Hennessy said Brannigan was gambling at the time and it seemed the bank was "giving out free money".

The court heard the defendant had since attended Gamblers Anonymous.

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