Woman 'ran text-a-getaway' service, court told

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A young woman operated a text-a-getaway-driver service for burglars, a court has been told.

Nicole Gibson, 20, offered criminals her services to help them make a clean getaway after robberies along the Irish border.

Gibson, a trainee hairdresser from Raphoe in County Donegal, appeared before Letterkenny District Court.

She was charged with three different incidents including break-ins at homes and at a school.

The court heard she responded to the text requests by removing stolen goods.


"She would be at home and would get a text message to pick people up," a police officer told the court.

In the case of the school, she had hooked up a trailer to her car to make off with garden equipment stolen from the premises including a Kawasaki quad bike.

On two other occasions, she collected criminals and copper stolen from houses under construction.

Police said 3,300 euros (£2,900 worth of copper) was stolen in the incidents and 700 euros (£600) worth of damage done to the properties.

"The copper was sold to a scrapyard in Derry," a police officer said.

The tools from the school robbery were later recovered by the Police Service of Northern Ireland, he said.

The thefts took place in February 2012.

Assistance from the public had identified that Gibson's car had been seen in the areas around the time of the thefts, which took place over a period of six days.

When she was questioned she admitted her role in the crimes.

Also in court was Michael Devlin, a 20-year-old who now lives in Londonderry.

He admitted being involved in one of the copper thefts.

Judge Paul Kelly described the incidents as "extremely serious". Both accused had no previous convictions and he ordered probation reports to be carried out and presented to the court in October.