A MAN who arrived in a hotel and told staff his yacht had been stolen by pirates off the Irish coast has had his prosecution for making false claims adjourned for a year.
Marek Kucia (37) turned up in the lobby of a hotel in Courtown, Co Wexford, on 28 July last year wearing a wetsuit before explaining that he had been boarded on his €100,000 boat while at sea.
He later told gardaí he had bought the yacht in Cork and was sailing up the coast when the incident took place.
In a separate incident just a few days beforehand, Kucia told gardaí in a Co Clare car park that his jet ski had been stolen by a violent gang.
He told them he had been out on the water at Lough Derg at about 3pm before being approached in the car park by a group of men. He was then punched in the stomach and thrown in the water while his jet ski was stolen, he had said.
Kucia later admitted that the two statements had been lies and he was subsequently charged with two counts of making false statements.
Gardaí told Gorey District Court last February that the two investigations had taken up considerable garda time and resources and that Kucia had admitted to their fictitious nature.
During that hearing, the court was also told the man's family had owed €50,000 to the Polish mafia although there were further question marks surrounding this claim.
Kucia, a Polish national and father-of-one with an address at Bellview Court, Mallow, Co Cork, has lived in Ireland for over five years and works as a part-time bus driver. He has no previous convictions.
His defence told the court that he must be suffering from some kind of psychological condition in order to make up such stories and that he had shown genuine remorse for his actions.
It was requested that he be given a psychological evaluation and at a hearing last week the court heard that he is suffering from paranoid schizophrenia.
Judge Donnchadh Ó Buachalla was furnished with probation and medical reports.
The reports made to gardaí were said to be a figment of Kucia's imagination and the court was told that the situation had had a devastating effect on Kucia's private life; he had separated from his wife.
Ó Buachalla heard that the defendant was now taking regular anti-psychotic medication and no longer hears voices in his head. He adjourned the case for one year in order to monitor Kucia's progress. When he next appears before the courts in November 2010, a report will be requested from gardaí in Mallow to ascertain his behaviour during that period.
Gardaí were given liberty to re-enter the case should the defendant come to their attention before then.