Defrauded State of over €57,000
A 47-YEAR-OLD Polish national who defrauded the state of more than €57,000 has been sentenced to one year in prison.
Piotr Mocek, of 28 Bellevue Heights, New Ross, pleaded guilty before Judge Barry Hickson at Wexford Circuit Criminal Court to 17 sample charges of using a false instrument - a social welfare card - in the name of Slawomir Szymanski to steal social welfare payments.
Prosecuting counsel Sinead Gleeson told the court that the defendant applied for jobseekers allowance on August 25, 2009, in the name of Slawomir Szymanski. She said that 228 payments had been made totalling €59,557.40. On June 11, 2014, he attended a meeting in the social welfare office and produced a card that was believed to be false.
Ms Gleeson said a complaint was made to gardaí with the defendant admitting the use of a false card when interviewed. He has been in custody on this matter for 11 months.
He has been living in New Ross for several years and has a long-term partner.
Defence counsel Mark Thompson said the defendant arrived in Ireland in 2007. He said that once this case was finalised he was going back to Poland to serve 18 months in custody. The document he used was a legitimate one, but he altered the name, so as not to be identified, relating to the fact that he was wanted back in Poland.
Judge Hickson said it appeared he could have used his own card but he used a false identify as he faced an 18-month custodial sentence in Poland. He imposed a 12-month sentence on each charge, to run concurrently, backdated to December 13, 2014.