09 Aug 2022

Tipperary mother’s addiction had ‘gone beyond all’, district court told

Tipperary mother’s addiction had ‘gone beyond all’, district court told

Clonmel District Court

A woman who was in the “throes of addiction” when she drove without insurance and a licence has received a suspended sentence and driving ban.

Georgina O’Mahony of 9 Kickham Place, Mullinahone was before Clonmel District Court on road traffic charges including having no insurance, driving without a licence and failure to provide the same at a garda station.

Sergeant Carol O’Leary said that on October 5, 2018, gardaí stopped the defendant at Kilvemnon, Mullinahone, who had no driving licence or insurance and no valid NCT or tax.

The car was seized and the defendant was requested to produce the documents at Clonmel Garda Station, but failed to do so.

Sgt O’Leary said the defendant has 46 previous convictions and most recently received a two-year driving disqualification in September 2018. She also received a four-year driving ban and a €2,500 fine in December 2008, and a two-year ban and a €1,500 fine in October 2008.

Her other convictions included public order and failure to produce documents offences.

Defence solicitor Aidan Leahy said his client, who was pleading guilty, was “concerned” about her previous convictions.

The solicitor said she was “very well-known” to the court prior to 2018. He said heroin had been “at the root” of her offences.

The solicitor said she was a heroin addict for eight years, but has been “clean” for nine months.

The solicitor said his client no longer has a car and hasn’t been driving. She has two children living with her and hopes that others will return home in the future.

The solicitor said his client has been engaging with the substance misuse service on a fortnightly basis and with her pharmacy on a weekly basis, having previously had to attend her pharmacy every day.

She is currently in a long-term relationship and things have “improved substantially” the last nine months, the solicitor continued.

“She has done very well,” Mr Leahy told the court, urging Judge Terence Finn not to impose a custodial sentence.

The solicitor said his client was in the “throes of addiction” when the offences were committed.

“It had gone beyond all,” Mr Leahy said, adding that she has committed to staying on the “narrow path”.

The solicitor said his client was en route to get the product when she was stopped by gardaí. “This is the last time she’ll be before the court, she says,” Mr Leahy stated.

The solicitor said his client hasn’t been stopped by gardaí the past two years, acknowledging his client would be in a more difficult position if the case had been heard earlier.

Judge Finn imposed concurrent sentences of five months of imprisonment, suspended on a Section 99 bond for a period of three years, for driving without insurance and a licence.

A six-year driving disqualification and a €500 fine to be paid within six months were also imposed for the insurance matter, with the failure to produce documents at the station taken into consideration.

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