A garda has been sentenced to one year in prison for deceiving an insurance company into paying him over €10,000 after his car was stolen.
Paul Fogarty, who was stationed in Dublin, had pleaded not guilty to the charge but was convicted by a jury.
Judge Sarah Berkeley accepted that the garda had been under financial, medical, and physical pressure but said he had contested the case and that a garda must be above reproach.
Fogarty and members of his family broke down in court today as the 28-year-old was led away to a prison van to be taken to jail.
On 10 January 2008, Fogarty crashed his Toyota Celica on the M50.
A month later, he met Christopher Kelly, a car dealer convicted of stealing cars, and gave him €5,000 to repair the Celica.
Kelly asked a contact to steal him a car like Fogarty's and transferred the parts from it to the garda's car, including a sound system, an alarm, and alloy wheels.
Kelly admitted he subsequently stole Fogarty's car.
The garda then informed Quinn Insurance that it had been stolen outside his grandmother's house; that it had been locked, was in perfect condition, and had not been involved in any crash.
The insurance company paid the garda over €10,000.
The fraud was discovered when detectives investigating Kelly subsequently arrested the garda.
Since then Fogarty has been appointed Head of Youth Development at Shelbourne Football Club and was offered a position of Director of Recruitment for Ireland and the UK at the club.
Judge Berkeley said he has used his time well as a talented and gifted coach who received a UEFA coaching qualification and volunteered with young people.
The judge also accepted that the garda had no previous convictions, had made a serious mistake and acted totally out of character.
She sentenced him to a year in prison.