05 Jul 2022

Drink driver hit speeds of 190kph while gardai pursued

Man appeals Portlaoise court judge's direction in Laois hotel sexual assault

An intoxicated uninsured driver reached speeds of between 170 and 190kph while being followed for 13km on the motorway was fined €750 and disqualified from driving for three years. 

Nicolae Gorobceanu, 34, of Beech Avenue, Brindle Hill, Charleville, Cork appeared before Portlaoise District Court on charges related to the incident on February 20 this year. The defendant was charged with dangerous driving at Trumera, Mountrath, drink driving at Clonadacasey on the M7 and having no insurance.   

State Solicitor Donal Dunne said gardai were performing a speed check at 2.25pm when they spotted the vehicle. He said gardai followed the vehicle on the motorway for 13km as it was driven at speeds of between 170 and 190kph while “tailgating” vehicles along the way. Once stopped, the driver admitted he had no insurance and he failed a roadside breath test, Mr Dunne said. He gave a reading of 75mgs per 100mls of breath. He said the man has no previous convictions. 

Solicitor Barry Fitzgerald admitted the “facts make for bleak reading” noting “the defendant tried to evade the clutches of gardai.” He said his client was a Moldovan national who works in construction and had been travelling between Dublin and Cork for the airport on the day in question. He said the man has a Moldovan licence but never regularised it here and instead “took the lazy and reckless option of proceeding to drive.”  Mr Fitzgerald said “he accepts his guilt and he accepts the penalties.”  

Judge Patricia Cronin said “the nature of the driving on the day most certainly constitutes dangerous driving.” Describing the speed, she said, “this was exceptionally high in this court’s view.” She fined the man €750 and disqualified him from driving for three years for drink driving, two years for dangerous driving and two years for not having insurance. She said the driving bans would run concurrently.

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