A Mountmellick man has been given a six-month sentence and put off the road for 20 years, having been convicted of driving without insurance on four separate dates.
At last week's sitting of Portlaoise District Court, Michael Ryan (27), Silverglen, Mountmellick, was charged with driving with no licence or insurance, on four separate dates between September and October this year.
Defence, Mr Philip Meagher said his client, a married man with children, had experienced a lot of difficulty with substance abuse, including cannabis and cocaine.
Defence handed in a letter from the accused’s GP which outlined medication he was taking.
Mr Meagher said his client was actively looking for help and had been on a waiting list for a number of months.
“What does that have to do with him driving without insurance on four occasions?” asked Judge Catherine Staines.
Mr Meagher went on to say that his client’s wife did not drive. The accused buys vehicles to do them up and sell them on, so he would have cars in the yard. Mr Meagher said that a family situation would arise and the accused would foolishly take the car to the shops.
“He assures the court he will never drive without insurance again,” said Mr Meagher.
Defence concluded by saying that the accused was anxious to be there for his family, as his wife is expecting another child.
“He’s asking to be given an opportunity to prove himself,” said Mr Meagher, suggesting that the accused attend with probation services.
However, Judge Staines said there was plenty of help available to the accused through community drugs programmes.
She said the accused had driven in breach of a court order, with him having been disqualified from driving for 20 years and still he drove on four different times.
Saying he had a complete disregard for court orders, Judge Staines imposed a six-month prison sentence and disqualified him from driving for 20 years.
Recognisance was fixed in the event of an appeal.