Letterkenny social welfare officer admits selling info to private investigator

A Letterkenny civil servant has pleaded guilty to 12 charges related to accessing information from social welfare files, to pass on to private investigators, for which he was paid a total of over €6000, Donegal Town Circuit Court was told.

50-year-old Rory Lenihan, 2A Ballaghderg, Letterkenny pleaded guilty to a charge that while being an officer employed by the Social, Community and Family Affairs, he corruptly accepted a gift or consideration to the credit of over just over 500 hundred euro into his Ulster Bank account in Donegal Town on April 21 2008 by checking information on individuals on Social Welfare that would help a private investigator in locating those individuals.

The defendant pleaded guilty to 11 identical charges in relation to sums of €406.20, €507.80, €558.58, €634.75, €583.97, €476.40, €476.40, €476.40, €476.40, €476.40, €476.40 that happened on dates in May, July, August, November and December of the same year.

He also pleaded guilty to identical charges on dates in March, April, May, June, July and August of 2009.

The defendant was paid a total of just over €6000.

The court was told that other charges were not being proceeded with, and the pleas to sample charges were acceptable.

Defence Counsel Peter Nolan said this was a Letterkenny case and asked for an adjournment to next sitting of Letterkenny Circuit Court on January 23.

He said the defendant had no previous convictions.

Judge John Aylmer adjourned the case to that date for the preparation of a Probation report.

The defendant was remanded on bail until that date.