Burglar alarm fitter tried to flog equipment on eBay

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A 36 year-old burglar alarm fitter who stole £7,000 of equipment attempted to sell it on eBay, a court has heard.

John Paul O’Connor, of Brockagh Road, Eglinton, pleaded guilty to stealing photographic and electronic equipment worth £7,000 from his employers Building Protection Systems.

The offence was committed between March 27 and April 10, 2014.

Derry Magistrates Court heard that O’Connor was a burglar alarm installer whose relationship with his employer had become ‘toxic’.

O’Connor then stole £7,000 of equipment belonging to Building Protection Systems from a site at Altnagelvin Hospital.

The 35-year-old offered it for sale on eBay at a reduced price to a rival security company.

When he was asked to attend a meeting with the Director of Building Protection Systems in Belfast to discuss the missing equipment he became so aggressive that the Harbour Police had to be called.

Defence solicitor Ciaran Shiels said that O’Connor had worked for Building Protection Systems for nine years until his relationship with them became ‘toxic’ and he then ‘stupidly took the head staggers’.

He told the court the 35-year-old ‘foolishly stole the equipment’ because he was concerned about outstanding wages owed to him by the company.

Mr Sheils said that O’Connor was ‘deeply embarrassed by his actions’ and hasrepaid the £7,000.

District Judge Barney McElholm said: “This was a misguided attempt by O’Connor to protect his own position, vis a vis outstanding wages owed to him.”

The 35-year-old was given a two year conditional discharge.