Banbridge Magistrates Court has heard how a local trailer manufacturing firm lost £4,000 of goods, after a former employee pleaded guilty to theft.
Ruari Sloane from Randall Heights had been an employee of William Herron Trailers from May to August of this year, heard the court, when he stole tyres, rims, LED lights and other components parts to make industrial trailers.
On 8 August police entered an address in Kilkeel and recovered items.
The owner of the property said he had bought and paid for the items in good faith from Sloane.
When interviewed by police, Sloane made a full admission stating that he entered the unlocked yard of Heron Trailers at 6am and loaded the goods onto a trailer for removal.
The court heard the goods were all recovered and fit for resale.
A solicitor said his client came from an impeccable family background and was ashamed of his actions.
He said Sloane had discussed this enterprise with another person but that individual was not facing prosecution. The solicitor said, “He had no business involving himself in this and accepts responsibility.”
District Judge Mr Paul Copeland said, “This was a breach of trust whereby there was a reliance by the employer of goodwill and honesty by the employee. It is a fundamental pillar of commerce that employees guard and protect the employer’s property.
“Instead you saw fit to seek to relieve him of a substantial amount of property and distribute it for your personal gain.”
Mr Copeland said he would take into account the early plea of guilty and the loss to Sloane’s reputation in a close knit community.He said it was “almost inevitable” that Sloane would get caught in this “foolish enterprise.”He was given 240 hours community service.