Friday 11th May 2018: Gas Networks Ireland has welcomed the verdict in two cases in Limerick District Court relating to unlawful interference with gas meters at addresses in Moyross and Old Cratloe Road, Limerick.
Judge Marian O’ Leary recorded a conviction against Mr. Jaunius Kontrimas with an address at Clonile, Old Cratloe Road and imposed a fine of €400.
Gas Networks Ireland outlined how evidence of interference was found when the meter was inspected in March 2016. A Gas Networks Ireland witness explained that the meter had been tampered with as to prevent it from correctly registering the gas that passed through it. Gas Networks Ireland stressed the magnitude of the safety risk presented by interfering with a gas meter in this way.
In a similar case before the court, Judge O’ Leary also recorded a conviction against Ms. Lorraine Keane of Delmege Park, Moyross. In this instance, Ms. Keane entered a guilty plea and, having heard evidence from Gas Networks Ireland in relation to the unlawful interference with the meter, Judge O’ Leary again imposed a fine of €400.
Owen Wilson, Networks Safety Manager for Gas Networks Ireland said:
“Today’s verdict sends out an important message to the public that meter tampering is a serious crime with potentially deadly consequences. Fraud is a very serious issue, but far more serious is the risk to life posed by meter tampering.”
“Gas customers should only ever allow a Registered Gas Installer (RGI) to work on their gas boiler or gas meter. Rogue contractors can make seemingly attractive offers, but the dangers involved, in allowing someone who is not registered and qualified to do the work, are very real, with serious risk posed to their own lives, that of their family and their neighbours.”
Due to the dangers involved, gas meter tampering is a criminal offence with possible fines of up to €5,000 and prison sentences of up to 6 months for those found guilty of the crime. Gas Networks Ireland has been actively engaged in identifying, and making safe, installations where tampering has been found and has detected over 2,300 cases of meter tampering across the country since 2013.
Members of the public are asked to report any suspicions of meter tampering to Gas Networks Ireland in strict confidence by calling 1850 200 694. Further information is available at; www.gasnetworks.ie/metertampering
For further information:
Issued by Murray on behalf of Gas Networks Ireland
Notes to Editor:
Mr. Kontrimas and Ms. Keane were convicted of offences relating to unlawful interference with a gas meter under Section 15 of the Energy (Miscellaneous Provisions) Act 1995 as amended by the Energy (Miscellaneous Provisions) Act 2012.
Gas Networks Ireland is the business division of Ervia that owns, builds and maintains the natural gas network in Ireland and connects all customers to the gas network. Gas Networks Ireland operates one of the most modern and safe gas networks in the world and ensures that almost 688,000 homes and businesses receive a safe, efficient and secure supply of natural gas, 24 hours a day, 365 days a year. Ervia is a commercial semi-state multi-utility company with responsibility for the delivery of gas and water infrastructure and services in Ireland.