herald

Wednesday 15 August 2018

Army man drove to window-cleaning job while banned

Paul Whelan
Paul Whelan

An Army reservist was under a driving ban when he "foolishly" got behind the wheel to get to a window-cleaning job, a court heard.

Paul Whelan (28) showed he did not take motoring laws seriously when he drove without insurance and under a ban to take up the job offer, a judge said.

Father-of-one Whelan was given a three-month suspended sentence and told he would be jailed if he was found driv- ing any vehicle in the next 12 months.

The accused, of Lissadell Drive, Drimnagh, pleaded guilty to uninsured driving.

Dublin District Court heard the incident happened at Glasnevin Woods last August 22.

The accused was stopped and his car had no insurance disc displayed.

He had previously been banned from driving for four years and it was still in effect at the time.

Whelan had also been given a suspended sentence.

Insult

On the day in question, the accused had received a call from a friend about a window cleaning job and, "rather foolishly", he decided to take up his friend's offer and got into the car, his lawyer said.

"To add insult to injury", the accused had applied to have his driving licence restored at the time.

Whelan was unemployed and had been accepted into the reserve Defence Forces.

He was "very sorry" for the offence.

"He doesn't take the road traffic legislation very seriously, or his obligation to other road users," Judge Grainne O'Neill said.

"He had a suspended sentence in the past and he was driving without insurance again."

The judge suspended the three-month sentence for a year on condition that Whelan is not found in control of any vehicle.

If he comes back before the court for road traffic offences in the next year, she warned, "he is going to jail".

The accused was also fined €400 and banned from driving for four years.

"Don't come back, Mr Whelan, or you won't be walking home," the judge said.

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