A 'hard working family man' involved in the Virgina ATM theft attempt is facing prison over his involvement with a 'hole in the wall' criminal gang.
The gang had netted almost €800,000 from a series of ATM thefts and 39 year old Niall Finnegan of Cherry Grove, Cullyhanna, Co Armagh, was in possession of over €100,000 in stolen cash when he was arrested at a location in County Meath in 2019.
At the Special Criminal Court last week Detective Sergeant Mark Looby told prosecutor Fiona Murphy SC the money had been linked to a number of ATM thefts which had been carried out in the Cavan and Monaghan areas.
He said the gang had used excavators to rip the ATMs from their locations, and they had caused 'significant amounts of criminal damage' during six raids and attempted raids in the Border region.
The gang had stolen €790,000 before arrests were made in the aftermath of a failed theft in Virginia two years ago.
At a hearing last July, Finnegan admitted he had been in possession of €103,930 knowing, believing, or being reckless as to whether it was the proceeds of criminal conduct.
The maximum penalty for the offence was 15 years' imprisonment.
Defence counsel described his client as a 'hard working family man' who had been 'free and forthcoming' with gardai in relation to his involvement with this particular offence.
Finnegan, who has three previous convictions for assault as well as several driving offences, later gave assurances to the court not to associate with the gang and to avoid all criminal activity in the future.
Before adjourning presiding judge Mr Justice Tony Hunt said the accused was facing a prison term.