Monet vandal back in prison for handling stolen art

Andrew Shannon (54) of Willans Way, Ongar, Clonsilla, was convicted by a jury at Dublin Circuit Criminal Court for possession of a stolen painting valued at €5,000 at his home on January 31, 2014.

Yesterday, Judge Patricia Ryan sentenced Shannon to two years in prison, which she backdated to last February 20, the day he went into custody.

Sgt Eugene McCarthy told John Berry, prosecuting, that a painting of a desert scene by Frederick Goodall, dating from 1892, was stolen from Bantry House, Seafield, Bantry, Co Cork, in March 2006.

Sgt McCarthy said gardai obtained a warrant to search Shannon’s home on an unrelated matter in 2014 and noticed various pieces of art hanging on the walls, one of which was the Goodall oil painting.

Violated

Shannon was charged in September 2016 and released on bail, but violated his conditions by travelling to the UK.

He was convicted by a jury on Wednesday following a two-day trial.

Shannon had 51 convictions, 13 relating to matters in foreign jurisdictions, including for theft, burglary and handling stolen property, many related to the theft of antiques.

He received a six-year sentence after being convicted of damaging a Claude Monet painting, Argenteuil Basin with a Single Sail Boat (1874), at the National Gallery of Ireland, Clare Street, on June 29, 2012.

Justin McQuade, defending, said his client had health difficulties and had quadruple bypass heart surgery in 2013.

Judge Ryan said mitigating factors were Shannon’s ill health, age and a favourable governor’s report.

He had been about to adjourn the case until next week, only for Shannon to say he was under enough stress and ask her to “get it over with now.”