herald

Monday 11 December 2017

Eagle has not landed .... rocker put out of unlicensed limo

Michael O’Rourke after he pleaded guilty to driving a limousine that wasn’t licenced as a public service vehicle. He was chauffeuring Timothy B. Schmit, bassist with 70s super group Eagles, at the time
Michael O’Rourke after he pleaded guilty to driving a limousine that wasn’t licenced as a public service vehicle. He was chauffeuring Timothy B. Schmit, bassist with 70s super group Eagles, at the time

A MEMBER of rock super-group the Eagles was chauffeured to his own concert in Dublin in a limousine that was not registered as a public service vehicle, a court has heard.

A Michael Devine Chauffeurs car carrying bassist Timothy B Schmit  was pulled over for inspection by gardai and the National Transport Authority on June 4 last. Mr Schmit was being taken from his hotel to the 3 Arena where the Eagles were playing to a sold-out crowd but he had to get alternative transport to the gig.

The driver of the 07-reg 600-series Mercedes was taximan Michael O'Rourke, with an address at Moorecastle Village, Kilmuckdridge, Co Wexford who was being paid €23 to bring the rocker to the venue.

He pleaded guilty at Dublin District Court to driving the limousine which had not been registered as a small public service vehicle for hire.

Judge John O'Neill said he will strike out the case if Mr O'Rourke pays €400 in legal costs and donates €200 to suicide prevention charity Pieta House. The case was adjourned until June.

In evidence NTA compliance officer Liam Kavanagh told Judge John O'Neill he received a tip-off from a reliable source about a vehicle bringing members of the rock group the Eagles from their hotel to the 3 Arena where they playing a concert that night.

Gardai were contacted and a check-point was set up at Sandymount Village in south Dublin where the limo was stopped.

Mr Kavanagh noticed there was "no licence fixed to the rear window".

The vehicle belonged to Michael Devine Chauffeurs Ltd and Mr O'Rourke told the NTA official he had been paid €23 to bring his passenger to the 3 Arena. He collected the car in Cherry Orchard in west Dublin.

Mr O'Rourke explained he was supposed to be driving another vehicle but he was handed the keys to the Mercedes instead and he had not checked its window to see if it was licensed as a PSV.

A member of the Eagles was in the back of the car and "we had to get different transport for him", said Mr Kavanagh.

He said Mr O'Rourke "was stunned to be in this situation" and agreed that the driver had an unblemished record.

Mr O'Rourke said it was "just an error" and NTA official told the court he felt sorry for him.

hnews@herald.ie

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