December 21

Donegal school principal who swindled €200k to have appeal heard today

first_imgA Donegal school principal who stole €200,000 by cutting school meals for disadvantaged pupils could face jail after State prosecutors appealed his “unduly lenient” sentence.Finbar Boyle, 39, who now lives in Ballybofey, spent the money on leading a lavish lifestyle. He went on Spanish golfing trips, weekend city breaks, his mortgage and clothes – but walked away from court with a suspended term.The dad of four was head of a primary school for children from disadvantaged communities in Co Cavan.The school receives gets extra State supports under its DEIS (Delivering Equality of Opportunity in Schools) designation.He could have faced up to a decade behind bars but in March last year, a judge decided to spare him jail because he’d managed to pay back €25,000 and shown “remorse”.Judge John Aylmer showed leniency after Boyle’s lawyers argued to the court that his “significant fall from grace” was affecting his efforts to find a new job. Now, Director of Public Prosecutions Claire Loftus has taken action against the suspended sentence.Today, the DPP’s lawyers will ask appeal judges to review the case and consider sending him to jail.Boyle, of Annalee Manor, Ballyhaise, Co Cavan, had no prior convictions.The Donegal man was principal of St Patrick’s National School in Kilnaleck, Co Cavan, between 2005 and 2013.In 2008, he cancelled school meals for kids at the small rural mixed primary, claiming a grant from the Department of Social Protection had been stopped.In fact, the school was still receiving the grant – and Boyle was keeping the money for himself.Gardai eventually caught up with him, arresting him in March 2015 following a two-year police probe. It later transpired Boyle had embezzled a total of €204,118 from State and also school funds.At court, he pleaded guilty to five sample charges – including theft of €73,320 from the Department of Social Protection between November 2009 and February 2011.One court sitting heard he spent €66,000 on the school credit card alone.His ill-gotten gains were splashed on golfing trips as well as weekend breaks in London, Dublin and Galway, Cavan Circuit Court heard.He purchased clothes as well as golf equipment and lessons, it was heard.And he put some of the cash towards his mortgage and household bills.However, Judge John Aylmer indicated in 2017 a non-custodial sentence would be “considered” if Boyle could repay €25,000 to the school.“He said: “I am not going to make any promises, but I am currently minded that it may be open to me to take a non-custodial approach.”The judge gave him 12 months to cough up – and with the help of family and friends, Boyle raised the cash ahead of his final sentencing hearing in March last year.During that hearing, his briefs revealed he’d endured a bitter divorce and had since suffered a breakdown.Boyle was on €193-a-week social welfare and had to travel in order to spend time with his young children, his defence team pleaded.His lawyers also claimed he’d suffered with “underlying and undiagnosed” psychological issues from a young age.It was also heard he was living in Ballybofey and had a new partner with whom he was expecting a child.Judge Aylmer remarked on the “significant breach of trust” and that the €25,000 paid back was a “fraction” of what was taken.But he noted Boyle’s many character references and lack of prior convictions – and handed him two-year suspended prison terms on each count.This morning, three top judges – Court of Appeal president George Birmingham, sitting with Judges Isobel Kennedy and John Edwards – will begin hearing the DPP’s appeal.Donegal school principal who swindled €200k to have appeal heard today was last modified: May 14th, 2019 by Staff WriterShare this:Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window)Click to share on Pocket (Opens in new window)Click to share on Telegram (Opens in new window)Click to share on WhatsApp (Opens in new window)Click to share on Skype (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window) Tags:BallybofeyFinbar Boyleprincipaltheftlast_img read more

December 17

In Case of Emergency, Please Use Twitter

first_imgFacebook is Becoming Less Personal and More Pro… Tags:#Trends#twitter#web The Dos and Don’ts of Brand Awareness Videos Guide to Performing Bulk Email Verification sarah perezcenter_img Related Posts The Safe America Foundation, a national safety group working with the U.S. government, announced yesterday that text messaging, social networking sites, and Twitter could help families stay in touch in the wake of a disaster. Although Twitter hasn’t always been known for its stability, in emergency situations when phone lines and other traditional communication avenues are down, social networking sites like it and others could turn into reliable backup methods for reaching loved ones. Safe America is an Atlanta-based group working with the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) on a campaign called “Drill Down for Safety.” The program’s focus is to make people more aware of the alternative methods for communication which are available during emergency situations. According to the group’s spokeswoman, Carla Shaw, people should pre-load emergency messages on their cell phones as well as useful communication websites. Families should also discuss among themselves how they will use these tools to contact each other if there is an emergency situation. “We want people to rehearse what would you do, and what other forms of communication would you have at your disposal,” says Shaw.For about a month, starting on September 11th and lasting through mid-October, 20,000 people are expected to participate in emergency training drills where the use of these alternative tools will be practiced. Some of the participants are volunteers who signed up on Safe America’s website but the majority will be employees from major companies including UPS,  Motorola, Allstate, and Office Depot where testing will be done on the companies’ campuses. For many technology early adopters, turning to a communication platform like Twitter or SMS when the landlines go down would probably be second nature, but if your friends and family don’t know how to access Twitter’s website, how to find and follow your account, or how to reply to your posts, then tweeting “Help!” or “I’m safe” isn’t going to be all that useful. That’s why it’s encouraging to see a national safety group like this focusing on training large groups on how modern social networking sites and Twitter can be used to share emergency information even when you can’t make a phone call. The only problem with this plan is the fact that when disaster strikes, cellular networks often go down too. That makes wireless communication – whether a phone call, a text, or something requiring data traffic – impossible. And then it’s back to square one. A Comprehensive Guide to a Content Auditlast_img read more