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Woman used lost debit card to buy cigarettes, takeaway food

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Margeta Pruteanu was in financial difficulties, court heard

Margeta Pruteanu was in financial difficulties, court heard

Margeta Pruteanu was in financial difficulties, court heard

A mother-of-two who found a lost debit card used it to run up a €160 bill for cigarettes, takeaway food and phone credit.

Margeta Pruteanu (23) was in a "difficult financial situation" when she committed the theft, a court heard.

The case was struck out, leaving her with no criminal record after Judge Ann Ryan told the accused to pay compensation.

Pruteanu, with an address at Thornhill Court, Celbridge, Co Kildare, pleaded guilty to theft in the incident last March 26.

A garda sergeant told Dublin District Court a debit card that had been lost was used to buy cigarettes and food to the value of €28 at Eurospar, Artane. It was also used to buy phone credit and order food online.

The court heard the total spent on the card was nearly €160.

The accused had no previous convictions of any kind.

Trouble

Pruteanu had been cooperative with the investigating gardaí and wanted to plead guilty from the outset, her solicitor Tracy Horan said.

It was the first time she had ever been in trouble.

She had two children aged two and three and was in a diff-icult financial situation.

"That is why she did it and she wishes to apologise," Ms Horan said.

Pruteanu was on social welfare, and the solicitor asked Judge Ann Ryan to be as lenient as she could in the circumstances.

The judge asked if any of the money had been recovered.

The sergeant said he thought the bank probably compensated the injured party, but it was out the full amount.

Ms Horan said her client would need time to pay compensation.

Judge Ryan adjourned the case. When it came back before the court, the charge was struck out.


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