May 23, 2024

A Donegal man has been sentenced to a few months in jail after fraudulently claiming over €34,000 in Jobseeker’s Allowance.

James Mitchell, a 42-year-old with an handle at Finnside Shut, Lifford, appeared earlier than Letterkenny District Court docket through video hyperlink from Castlerea Jail, the place he’s serving a sentence.

Detective Garda Paul Lynch informed the court docket that he attended a premises in Letterkenny in September 2021 at which Mitchell was mentioned to reside. A ‘For Sale’ signal was erected within the backyard and Detective Garda Lynch discovered that Mitchell had left the property, which was vacant since March 2021.

The court docket heard that, throughout a interval between March 2020 and September 2021, Mitchell obtained Jobseeker’s Allowance in extra of €34,000.

Enquiries with the Division of Social Safety in Northern Eire knowledgeable officers that Mitchell obtained over £22,600stg in Common Credit score.

“This wasn’t declared and he was completely in breach of the factors for Jobseeker’s Allowance,” Detective Garda Lynch informed the court docket.

Mitchell has 44 earlier convictions, none of which relate to social welfare fraud, the court docket heard.

Mr Michael Shiel, solicitor for Mitchell, mentioned his shopper was claiming the cash for himself, his companion and his two youngsters.

“He was residing within the State when he first claimed the Jobseeker’s Allowance,” Mr Shiel mentioned. “Throughout a course after that, he went to Strabane. He didn’t profit from the entire cash – his companion and youngsters additionally did. It was considerably a three way partnership so to talk.”

Mr Shiel mentioned Mitchell was tendering a responsible plea, which saved the court docket appreciable time and expense as witnesses from Northern Eire would have been required in a contested case.

Mitchell is presently incarcerated at Castlerea Jail for highway site visitors offences and is due for launch in August 2025. Mr Shiel mentioned there was ‘no prospect’ of the cash being repaid.

Decide Ciaran Liddy mentioned Mitchell had claimed a ‘appreciable sum of cash’ from the taxpayer and has ‘intensive’ earlier convictions.

Mitchell was sentenced to a few months in jail.

Lifford man jailed for falsely claiming over €34,000 in Jobseeker’s Allowance was final modified: October seventeenth, 2023 by Workers Author