A 31-year-old man has received a six-month suspended jail term and four-year driving ban for driving carelessly on the M8 at Skeheenarinky without insurance cover while on a mission to sell his car.
Judge John O’Leary imposed these penalties along with a €200 fine for driving without a licence on father-of-two Stephen O’Halloran of Tullig, Dripsey, county Cork but now living in Clonmel at Cashel District Court’s latest sitting. The defendant pleaded guilty at the court to committing these driving offences on June 13.
Sgt Carol O’Leary outlined that gardaí responded to a report of a vehicle that appeared to swerve onto the hard shoulder and across into the overtaking lane of the motorway at 11pm on this date.
They stopped the vehicle and the driver, Stephen O’Halloran, admitted he previously received a driving ban from Macroom District Court. He had 11 previous convictions including two for driving without insurance.
In September last year he received a four-year driving licence disqualification and 120 hours community service for a driving without insurance offence.
Defence solicitor Aidan Leahy said at the time his client was living in county Cork and lost his job and home about two weeks before this incident.
Mr O’Halloran was driving his vehicle on the day he was stopped to try and get it sold. His client accepted he shouldn’t have taken it on the road.
Mr Leahy presented a letter to Judge O’Leary from Mr O’Halloran’s partner outlining his virtues in taking care of his family, his understanding of the seriousness of the offences and the difficulties in his life.
He explained that Mr O’Halloran and his family were now residing in Clonmel and he had started a new job on night-shift work. The solicitor appealed to the judge not to send his client to jail in view of the progress he has made.
Judge O’Leary responded that these were serious matters but in view of Mr Leahy’s plea, he suspended for a year the two consecutive three months’ jail terms he imposed on Mr O’Halloran for driving without insurance and careless driving.
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