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Laura Hutton/Photocall Ireland

Man gets suspended term for giving his birth cert to another man who applied for fake passport

Sentencing William Connors, Judge Martin Nolan accepted he was remorseful and that his previous convictions are for minor offences.

A MAN WHO provided documents for a fake passport application, which was certified by a garda who is now facing charges, has been given a suspended sentence.

William Connors gave his birth certificate and other documents to another man, who then attended at a garda station in Kildare in January 2020 and applied for a passport using his own photos and Connor’s documents.

The application was certified by a garda before being sent to the Passport Office for processing, John Byrne SC, prosecuting, told Dublin Circuit Criminal Court today.

Staff at the Passport Office noticed that the photos provided did not match a previous passport which had been issued to Connors and an investigation was launched. A number of co-accused people, including the garda who certified the application, are due to stand trial next year.

Connors (30) with an address at Johnstown, Bennekerry, Co Carlow, pleaded guilty to one count of providing false documents in connection with a passport application at Irish Passport Services, Balbriggan, Co Dublin on 22 January 2020. It is an offence that carries a maximum 10 year sentence.

Connors has 19 previous convictions, all for road traffic offences.

The man who allegedly applied for the passport already had a passport in his own name, but it is believed he wanted a second fake passport, the court heard.

Seamus Clarke SC, defending Connors, said his client was extremely remorseful for his actions. He is married with three children, one of whom has a serious health condition, the court heard.

Connors comes from a settled Traveller family and has a good work history, Clarke said. A number of testimonials were handed in to court.

Sentencing Connors, Judge Martin Nolan accepted he was remorseful and that his previous convictions are for minor offences. He handed down a two-year sentenced and suspended it on a number of conditions.

“You sailed close to the wind Mr Connors,” he told the defendant. “The next time, you’ll go to jail.”