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Man Admits Embezzling 200,000 to Feed Gambling Habit
A man who embezzled over 200,000 from his employer to place bets at Paddy Power
bookmakers has been remanded on bail for sentence on July 29 by Dublin
Circuit Criminal Court.
Bernard Norton, aged 30, of St. Dominic’s Avenue, Tallaght, pleaded
guilty to 11 sample counts of fraud, forgery and embezzlement to the
total value of 204,849.29 from private loan company GE Woodchester,
between August 2001 and May 2002.
Detective Garda John O’Brien from the Garda Fraud Investigations Bureau
told prosecuting counsel, Ms Una Ni Raifeaetaigh BL, that as a GE
Woodchester employee, Norton liaised between the company and its
customers, which included private individuals and car dealers.
GE Woodchester lent money to both car dealers and private individuals to
buy cars and the customers paid the company back in instalments.
Norton’s work involved delivering and collecting cheques from the
customers and also filling in loan applications for potential customers.
Det. Garda O’Brien said Norton had added his name to eight of the 11
cheques he was charged with forging.
This enabled him to lodge the money into his own rather than into the
His other method had been to forge applications in the name of
fictitious customers and obtain loans which he again lodged into his own
The cheques ranged in value from 14,000 to 35,000 and were forged over
a period of nine months.
Det. Garda O’Brien said that when the matter came to light after a
complaint received from one of the car dealers that GE Woodchester dealt
with, an internal investigation was conducted before gardaí were called
and Norton readily admitted to his offences.
Ms Aileen Donnelly, BL, for Norton, said he had been a chronic gambling
addict and had used all the money he obtained from his employers on
placing bets at Paddy Power bookmakers, both at the shop and online on
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