My angel McNulty stole more than 101,000 euros from the special needs school he was once principal of to fund his gambling addiction. [Image: Shutterstock.com]
In the titles for the wrong reason
A special needs school principal is set to be sentenced for stealing 101,000 euros ($108,210) to fund his gambling addiction.
Forged signatures were written on checks paid by the school
Malaki McNulty, 39, wrote forged signatures on checks paid by the school and used a business credit card to funnel money into his account over three years. He confessed to his crimes when a school board member confronted him about his gambling habit.
It was later revealed that McNulty, who was also a coach for the Gaelic Athletics Association (GAA), had forged signatures on 48 checks and documents in all; Then he transferred money from four school accounts to a bank account he had access to from 2017 to 2019.
McNulty’s defense team described his behavior as “chaotic,” with transfers ranging from €20 ($21.44) to four figures. Volatility is attributed to a psychological state of panic and distress.
The Portlaoise Circuit Court has heard that the former manager has since resigned and has already paid €50,600 ($54,248). That money came from another job he got and worked at for two years.
In all, McNulty’s indictment referred to 380 incidents.
Consider prison, but school reimbursement is the priority
Presiding judge Kenan Johnson said it was “astonishing” that gambling addiction had created a “sea of debt”. Johnson also said he would consider prison, but paying school is the priority before concluding that McNulty’s habits have ruined his career.
A letter from the Rhode GAA Secretary said McNulty had been upfront about the issue prior to his appointment as coach.
More details of the case
The court tragically revealed how McNulty’s brother took his own life in 2010 as a result of gambling problems.
Paddy Byrne, the person who confronted McNulty, told police that he immediately confessed without responding. McNulty subsequently sought mental health before being accepted into an in-house course at the Rutland Center in Dublin.
A witness told the court that all of the former manager’s money went to gambling and “nothing else.”
A lead investigator told the court that McNulty confessed to his crimes, cooperated fully, and was remorseful. His defense team said he wanted to pay the school whether or not he faced a prison sentence.
One way or another, the account will be settled by the end of the year.”
“One way or another, the account will be settled by the end of the year,” his team said. McNulty has been released on bail and will return to court in July.
McNulty was once a standout player for the Portlaoise team that won every LAWA championship from 2007 to 2014. As manager, his team won three titles from 2015 to 2018 before taking over Rudd, who won the Offaly Championship in 2020.