herald

Friday 31 October 2014

Tallafornia's Corminator fights his conviction over green diesel

TALLAFORNIA star Cormac Brannigan has begun an appeal aimed at clearing his conviction for having green diesel in his BMW car.

Brannigan (30), known as the 'Corminator', with an address at Woodbrook Court, Castleknock Dublin, was prosecuted by the Revenue Commissioners for an offence under the Finance Act.

Brannigan, who is currently on the small screen in the second series of TV3 programme Tallafornia, was fined €2,500 last October. He pleaded guilty before Dublin District Court to having marked mineral oil containing blue dye in his car's fuel tank, at Airton Road garda pound in Tallaght, on January 10, 2011.

When not partying in Santa Ponsa with his fellow cast members for Tallafornia, Brannigan works as a taxi driver in Dublin.

In those proceedings, he had offered to donate €2,500 to charity in the hope that he would be left without a criminal record. However, the district court had held that a recorded conviction and a fine was mandatory.

The taxi-driver has launched an appeal of the severity of the penalty and the case was listed before the Circuit Court in Dublin yesterday.



Canister

Defence counsel Donall Johnston told Judge Terence O'Sullivan the issue in the case was whether a charitable donation in lieu of a fine and a conviction was acceptable.

Brannigan, who has no prior criminal convictions, did not have to give evidence.

Judge O'Sullivan adjourned the appeal until a date in March.

In the district court prosecution, a judge had heard that a customs officer took a sample of fuel from Brannigan's '02-reg BMW, which was tested and found to contain marked mineral oil. A canister containing more green diesel was found in the boot.

Brannigan was questioned and agreed that he had put the fuel in his car.

His lawyer had told the district court that Brannigan had been returning from a late night fare when his car broke down and there were no petrol stations open at the time.

He called his father, a garage owner who has a Hitachi truck which uses green diesel, to come and help him.

His father arrived with a canister of fuel and they put it in the car but at the time Brannigan was unaware that it was green diesel.

hnews@herald.ie

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