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Ex-GAA treasurer to face Crown Court over accusations of swindling his club

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A man has appeared in court charged with abusing his position to defraud one of the top GAA clubs in Co Antrim - the Ruairi Og club in Cushendall

A man has appeared in court charged with abusing his position to defraud one of the top GAA clubs in Co Antrim - the Ruairi Og club in Cushendall

A man has appeared in court charged with abusing his position to defraud one of the top GAA clubs in Co Antrim - the Ruairi Og club in Cushendall

A man has appeared in court charged with abusing his position to defraud one of the top GAA clubs in Co Antrim - the Ruairi Og club in Cushendall.

Patrick Kane (47), with an address at Ardmoyle Park in Cushendall, was in the dock at Coleraine Magistrates Court yesterday.

The former club treasurer faces five charges - four of fraud by abuse of position and one of false accounting.

The four fraud charges relate to dates between September 1, 2009 and May 1, 2016.

The club has won several Antrim and Ulster hurling titles and on St Patrick's Day 2016, they lost out in the All-Ireland Senior Club Hurling Championship final at Croke Park.

The first fraud charge alleges that Kane "falsely represented that payments were made to suppliers in cash", while others allege cheque fraud.

The details of the false accounting charge are that between December 5 and 8, 2015, Kane "destroyed, defaced, concealed or falsified a certain account, record or document - namely a Danske Bank statement for Ruairi Og Gaelic Athletic Club showing a balance of £75,896.10 - which had been made or required for an accounting purpose".

The defendant was present in court for a preliminary enquiry - the legal step to send a case to the Crown Court.

A prosecutor submitted that on the basis of the papers before the court there was a case to answer.

A defence solicitor said he had no contrary submissions.

No further details surrounding the allegations were given to the court.

The defendant had the case sent to Antrim Crown Court in mid-February and was given £500 bail.

The defence lawyer said the defendant is "self-employed".

Sending the matter to the Crown Court, District Judge Peter King said they were "very significant allegations".

Belfast Telegraph