Hidden Crime of Family Thefts
PARENTS who have had cash stolen from their homes by an unknown family member are increasingly turning to lie detectors to find out who the guilty party is.
Sian Devine, who runs Dublin-based Lie Detector Ltd, said the number of bookings to her service over the “hidden crime” peaks over Christmas. And she said the number of enquiries she’s had in relation to money taken by mystery family members has already risen by 50 per cent since late November.
She said: “There’s clearly a lot of people struggling at this time of year and resorting to stealing money from their parents. “In most cases it’s older parents who get in touch with us, who suspect one or more of their adult children has taken a fairly substantial sum of money from their homes.”
“It’s very much a hidden crime, and it’s one which the victims do not wish to report to the gardai. They want to get to the bottom of it as soon as possible, without having to report a crime, or see their sons or daughters get into trouble.”
“Sometimes there might be two or three children, who are under suspicion and brought into us for the polygraph probe.”
“Once we find the culprit, he or she will often say it was the pressure of Christmas and that they had every intention of paying it back.”