A director of a family run business which was the victim of theft by a former Galway hurling star has said the betrayal was exacerbated by his failure to apologise for two and a half years.
Former Galway hurler David Glennon will be sentenced in May for the theft of €60,000 from his former employer which he used to fund his gambling addiction.
Mr Glennon (26) from Loughrea, appeared at Galway Circuit Criminal Court for sentencing after he had pleaded guilty to seven sample charges of theft from J&C Kenny Wine Distributors between December 1, 2012 and July 8, 2015.
The court heard that Mr Glennon spend the money on bookies, online gambling and virtual racing.
The thefts, which totalled €60,750, came to light after Mr Glennon took over the account of a colleague while they were on holiday. Upon return the salesman noted money had not been returned to the cash office. He approached Mr Glennon and some of the money was repaid the next day.
The matter was raised with the company owner who questioned Mr Glennon. He confessed he had a gambling problem and had been using money collected from clients to feed his addiction.
Mr Glennon left the company that day and went directly to the Cluain Mhuire addiction treatment centre in Oranmore where he underwent a 12 week residential rehabilitation programme.
An investigation noted 23 affected accounts, 18 were in the name of customers, one was in the name of David Glennon and four were found to be false accounts.
A victim impact statement was read by Aoife Kenny, a director in the company who said the thefts had been a “huge betrayal” of the family and employees who had stood by Mr Glennon through his past struggle with addiction.
She said the betrayal was exacerbated by the fact that it had taken Glennon two and a half years to apologise for his actions which could have put them out of business.
“The amount of money taken from us, as we are a small company almost caused our business to close,” she said.
She said the thefts had a serious impact on her life, the life of her father and lives of all employees.
“We struggled for many years to repair the damage he has caused both personally and financially,” she added.
Counsel for the defense Bernard Madden said the failure of his client to apologise had been a misunderstanding. Mr Glennon repaid €65,000 to the company last February. He apologised for his actions yesterday.
The court also heard from former GAA star Oisin McConville who spoke highly of Mr Glennon’s efforts to overcome his addiction and highlight the issue of gambling addiction nationally.
Mr McConville told the court Mr Glennon would be have to battle his addiction for the rest of his life but that he was helping others by speaking out about his struggle. He said Mr Glennon addressing 7,500 people in Dublin this week about his gambling was educating others while acting as therapy for him.
“Gambling addiction is always that monkey on your shoulder but it is up to us to keep it there and not to act on these things,” he said.
The court heard Mr Glennon has two previous convictions for road traffic offences and one conviction for assault causing harm.
Judge Rory McCabe said the crimes were mid range in terms of severity and said the headline sentence prior to mitigation was four years. Taking in account mitigating circumstances that he co-operated fully, pleaded guilty early, repaid the funds and underwent counselling reduced this to two years.
He adjourned the case until May 10, to allow a probation report be carried out.