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Court News : Suspended jail sentence for causing over £900 damage to bookie gaming machines

A man who 'vented his frustration' after losing money on poker machines on two different occasions has been given a suspended prison sentence at Derry Magistrate's Court.

Derry courthouse

Derry courthouse at Bishop Street.

A man who 'vented his frustration' after losing money on poker machines on two different occasions has been given a suspended prison sentence at Derry Magistrate's Court.

Conall Collins, 28, of Crawford Square, admitted two counts of criminal damage to the poker machines when he appeared on foot of an arrest warrant.

The court was told that on May 12, 2017, police were called Ladbrokes in Chamberlain Street after a machine was damaged at the cost of £264.

The court heard CCTV footage was examined and an unidentified male could be seen punching the machine.

The court was told £718 damage was caused in a similar incident at the Ladbrokes office at Park Avenue in the Rosemount area of the city and police were able to identify Collins as the perpetrator. The court was told several attempts were made to talk to Collins but these were unsuccessful.

Defence solicitor, Paddy MacDermott, said his client had pleaded guilty to the offences in November last year but had not completed a pre-sentence report nor had he turned up for his sentencing on January 3.

He said that at the time of the offences, Collins had been drinking and gambling but was no longer doing so.

The solicitor said after losing his money, Collins had 'lost his temper and punched and kicked the machine.'

He added the defendant had 'a limited record' and was willing to pay compensation.

Collins was given a one month prison sentence suspended for 18 months and ordered to pay £400 in restitution.

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