Told police he had been robbed after he gambled money away

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After gambling his benefit money away on poker machines a 50-year-old man called police and told them he had been robbed at knifepoint in Portadown.

Gary Thomas Irwin, Princess Way, Portadown, admitted wasting police time by making a false statement.

The court heard that on March 7 police received a phone call from the defendant claiming he had been robbed at knifepoint in Bridge Street, Portadown.

Police arrived with an armed response unit and two call signs to an ongoing burglary were cancelled.

Irwin gave descriptions of the men and said his benefit money had been stolen but witnesses said they had seen nothing.

The defendant then admitted he had lied about the robbery because he had gambled away his benefit money on poker machines. The cost of the call out on police resources was £310.

District Judge, Mrs Bernie Kelly, adjourned the case until July 6 to obtain a pre-sentence report.