A judge has refused jurisdiction on a case involving a Markethill woman accused of stealing nearly £9,000 from Women’s Loyal Orange Lodge after deeming she did not have the sentencing power.
The 71-year-old is alleged to abused her power as a treasurer of the Anne Sinton Memorial WLOL 105 and stolen £8893.83.
Josephine Trimble, of Keady Street, appeared charged with fraud by abuse of position and theft at Armagh Magistrates’ Court on Tuesday.
The offences are alleged to have occurred between January 1, of 1993 and January 2, of 2019.
The defendant is accused of abusing her power s a treasurer of the Anne Sinton Memorial WLOL 105 in Markethill and stealing £8893.83.
Defence barrister John McCann stated that his client was ready to be put on election and indicate her plea for the offence.
District Judge Josephine Watters interrupted stating: “That is a lot of money in a breach of trust case to be dealt with in this court.
“I think that I only have the power to order compensation of £5,000 but this is for £8893.83”.
Prosecution confirmed this was the maximum compensation the judge could order.
They said that the directing officer in the case believed that there was “sufficient sentencing power” in the Magistrates.
Judge Watters stated: “It’s not purely a theft it does also involve a breach of trust, I think that little by little the PPS have raised the bar of what in cases of theft, fraud and money laundering must be to be dealt with in the Crown.
“I am going to refuse jurisdiction, I will take it for eight weeks for a PE date to be identified”.
Trimble was released on continuing bail to appear on March 10.