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Former Portwest employee pleads guilty to theft of clothing


A FORMER employee of Portwest stole nearly €30,000 in clothing from their warehouse in Westport a court heard.
Robert Pieprz of Mullingar, Co Westmeath appeared before last week’s sitting of Castlebar Circuit Criminal Court where he pleaded guilty to a total of six charges. He pleaded guilty to three charges of theft and three charges of unlawful use of a computer with the intention of making a gain under the theft and fraud offences act.
The 39-year-old Polish national committed the offences while employed by Portwest in Westport between May and August in 2014. The first charge of theft occurred on May 3, 2014 when he took Portwest branded clothing worth €11,317.04 from the Charles Hughes Ltd warehouse; the second offence took place on May 8, 2014 when he stole €13,758.60 worth of clothing and the third offence took place on August 24, 2014 when he stole €2,344.79 worth of clothing.
The clothing included hoody tops, fleece jackets, waterproof jackets, puff jackets, sweaters and polar fleece worth a total of €27,420.43.
Mr Diarmuid Connolly, counsel for the defendant said his client was a family man currently living in Mullingar and was starting his own business. He asked for an adjournment for a  probation report and also asked for time to be given to his client to pay back compensation.
Judge Francis Comerford agreed to direct a probation report and adjourned sentencing until July 9 next. He also varied Mr Pieprz’s bail to sign on once a week at Mullingar Garda Station instead of twice a week.