Judge refused application in absence of documentary evidence of the person being ill
Tue, 21 Jun, 2022 – 02:00
A couple charged with money-laundering in Cork in respect of a sum of over €250,000 in a bank account were refused in their application to have bail conditions changed to visit a sick relative in Romania.
Garda David Kelleher said the prosecution was opposed to bail being changed in respect of 56-year-old Chilimbar Vasile and 54-year-old Florina Gheorghe of 13A Eagle Valley, Sarsfield Road, Wilton, Cork.
Garda Kelleher said the State had been informed that Ms Gheorghe’s mother was in hospital in Romania and that she and her husband (and co-defendant) wished to travel to visit her.
Garda Kelleher said the prosecution had not been furnished with any documentation in relation to the relative’s medical condition and circumstances that could be verified through Interpol colleagues.
The witness said there were risk factors in relation to whether they would return to Cork for the trial if bail was relaxed to allow them to return to Romania.
Sinéad Behan, defence barrister, said there was a period of months between the time when the investigation commenced and the bringing of charges when the two accused were aware they were being prosecuted but did not take the opportunity to leave the country. She said this opportunity was there before they were charged and bail conditions imposed.
Judge Helen Boyle said she was refusing the application in the absence of any documentary evidence of the person being ill.
“There is no evidence that this lady’s mother is sick. I don’t know where I can go with that. My instinct is to refuse the application. I dismiss it. If you wish to come before the court with actual evidence I will hear it,” Judge Boyle said.
They were both charged that on September 24, 2019, proceeds of criminal conduct namely the money was credited to an AIB account in another name, knowing or being reckless as to whether it was the proceeds of crime.
Garda Kelleher said the sum of money, allegedly in the AIB account in question, was €228,274.
The main bail condition is that that the defendants had to surrender their passports and undertake not to leave the jurisdiction for the duration of the case.
Chilimbar Vasile faces 29 charges in relation to alleged transactions in a bank account. Florina Gheorghe faces two charges.
The case against them was adjourned to the first day of the next sessions of Cork Circuit Criminal Court commencing on October 24. It is anticipated a date will then be set for a hearing of the case by judge and Jury