De­fence fails to con­vince judge that drink driv­ing ar­rest was in­valid

Enniscorthy Guardian - - NEWS -

A Camolin man ap­peared be­fore Judge Ger­ard Haughton at the Dis­trict Court last week to con­test a drink driv­ing charge against him dat­ing from Septem­ber 21 of 2014.

Quarry op­er­a­tor Billy O’Leary (45) of Bal­ly­more, Camolin, was charged with the of­fence at Bal­ly­na­mony, Bal­ly­canew.

Garda Catherine Keogh gave ev­i­dence that she, along with two other gar­daí, had ob­served the de­fen­dant driv­ing er­rat­i­cally and brak­ing ex­ces­sively be­fore they pulled him over.

She said that when she talked to him, she got a smell of in­tox­i­cat­ing liquor and ob­served that his eyes were glazed.

She formed an opin­ion that he was in­ca­pable of op­er­at­ing an MPV be­fore he was cau­tioned, ar­rested and brought to Gorey Garda Sta­tion where he later re­turned a read­ing of 59mg of al­co­hol per 100ml of breath.

O’Leary’s bar­ris­ter, Mr Martin Joseph Dully, asked Garda Keogh if she re­called a con­ver­sa­tion with his client. She said that she had noted that he said that he had had three to four pints.

Mr Dully asked if this was on foot of a di­rect ques­tion from her and she said she couldn’t re­call as it was back in 2014. Mr Dully main­tained that if O’Leary had been asked if he had been drinking, he should have been cau­tioned first and that the ar­rest was there­fore un­law­ful.

Judge Haughton said that, even if the garda had asked the ques­tion be­fore cau­tion, this was ad­mis­si­ble in the for­ma­tion of an opin­ion that the de­fen­dant was drunk and was not re­quired to prove the case it­self.

He said, there­fore, that there was a case to an­swer. Mr Dully said that his client did not in­tend to en­ter the wit­ness box, af­ter which Judge Haughton opted to con­vict.

Mr Dully said that his client, a fa­ther of three, op­er­ated a quarry as his oc­cu­pa­tion and the loss of his li­cence would have a grave im­pact upon him. Tak­ing ev­ery­thing into con­sid­er­a­tion, Judge Haughton handed down a €600 fine and a twoyear driv­ing ban.

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