A waiter who used his manager's code to access a hotel restaurant's till, split the bills and steal money was convicted and fined €1,000 for the offence at Carrick-on-Shannon District Court last week.
Janos Marton, a 41-year-old Hungarian national with an address at 20 Parkmore Manor, Roscrea, Co Tipperary, pleaded guilty to stealing cash in the amount of €165, €126, €80, €40, €30 and €5, and a gift voucher valued at €58 on various dates in August and September 2018, property of Ciaran Reidy, Manager, Lough Rynn Estate and Gardens, Mohill.
Sgt Michael Gallagher said that Mr Marton was an employee of the hotel at the time. On September 25, 2018 the manager reported to Gardai in Mohill incidents of theft and discrepancies regarding transactions in the restaurant of the hotel.
The defendant, who was a front of house employee serving guests, was completing transactions he was not authorised to do on the till system. He had got hold of his manager's ID and had effectively deceived the till system and removed excess cash from the till by not recording the exact products purchased by guests. Sgt Gallagher said it would show up as a void on the system and would not be immediately obvious to anyone.
The guests were presented with a bill which was paid in full and the money would be removed when the till was cashed out.
Martin Burke, solicitor, said Mr Marton moved to Ireland in 2013 and began work here.
In April 2017 a new till system was introduced in the hotel and there were some teething problems among the staff members and the use of the manager's log-in was commonplace.
Mr Marton saw an opportunity and chose to deceive the complainant.
Mr Burke described it as being entirely wrong and a betrayal of trust. When Mr Marton was confronted by the manager he accepted his wrongdoing at that time.
Mr Burke said Mr Marton and another man wanted to pay back the money and accepted without dispute that the money was owed to the hotel. A five figure sum was paid over by bank draft to the hotel.
Mr Marton apologised for his actions and appreciated the huge betrayal of trust by him.
He now works for another hotel and they consider him to be a trusted employee. A letter of reference was handed into court.
Judge Kevin Kilrane said the defendant and another man, who has since left the jurisdiction, appeared to spot an opportunity to steal. He said he understood the drift of what was carried out by the defendant, effectively splitting the bills, recording some and pocketing the rest.
“He was quite skilled to spot what bill could be split and quite adept at doing it,” he said.
Judge Kilrane said almost €25,000 was stolen from the hotel by this man and possibly another person.
“Absolute trust is required of the employee and he breached that trust very, very seriously,” the Judge said.
In mitigation, he said Mr Marton cooperated fully with both the hotel and Garda investigations, repaid almost €25,000 and has no previous convictions.
He said he would deal with it by way of fine rather than prison sentence.
He convicted and fined him €1,000 on the first count of stealing €165, and also convicted him on the other charges, taking them into consideration.