Director convicted and given community service in the Circuit Court for breaches of the Pensions Act
5 December 2014: In Waterford Circuit Court on Tuesday 18 November 2014, Mr. Thomas Walsh, company director of Spectron M & E Engineering Ltd (in liquidation) with an address of 16 The Pines, Ballinakill Downs, Waterford, pleaded guilty to offences contrary to section 58A(1) of the Pensions Act, 1990, as amended, for failing to remit employee pension contributions to the trustee of the Construction Workers Pension Scheme (CWPS) within the statutory time limit.
This case was deemed too serious to be dealt with on a summary basis in the District Court. Therefore, the Pensions Authority sought directions from the Director of Public Prosecutions, who consented to the charges against the defendant proceeding on indictment in the Circuit Court. There were six section 58A(1) charges before the Court covering employee deductions not remitted to CWPS of approximately €146,000.
Finalising sentence on 27 November 2014 Judge Codd ordered Mr Walsh to complete 150 hours community service in lieu of 18 months imprisonment in relation to three of the charges. For the other three charges Judge Codd imposed 3 year prison sentence, suspended in full on the basis that Mr Walsh had discharged €10,275 to CWPS.
Commenting on the conviction in this case, the Pensions Regulator, Brendan Kennedy, said, “The non-remittance of pension contributions has a significant effect on pension scheme members. The Pensions Authority treats this issue seriously and advises employers in such a position to contact the trustees of their pension scheme immediately.”
For further information, contact:
Head of Operations and Communications
The Pensions Authority
Tel (01) 6131900
Note to Editors
The Pensions Authority
The Pensions Authority is the statutory body established by The Pensions Act 1990 to regulate occupational pension schemes, trust based RACs and Personal Retirement Savings Accounts (PRSAs) and to advise the Minister for Social Protection on overall pension policy development. See www.pensionsauthority.ie
Under the Act, the Authority has power to carry out investigations into alleged breaches of the Pensions Act and to ensure that trustees, employers, pension administrators and their advisers comply with their obligations to current and former employees in relation to their pension contributions and benefits.
The Authority’s powers allow it to conduct on-site visits without notice, seize and copy relevant documents, enter dwellings on foot of a warrant, and to prosecute any person that contravenes the provisions of the Act.
The Construction Workers Pension Scheme (CWPS)
CWPS is an occupational pension scheme approved by the Revenue Commissioners and registered with the Pensions Authority.