A DAD who was "fiddling with the car radio" when he rear-ended a BMW has been banned from the road for life.
Jason Finlay (39) begged a judge not to send him to prison, saying his family has had a difficult few years, with both his parents and his sister dying. She left behind three young children.
Tallaght District Court heard that one of Finlay's brothers was in prison serving a life sentence, while a second brother was on remand for Circuit Court matters.
His solicitor Michael Hennessy said Finlay was finally clean from drugs having fought a 20-year battle with heroin.
He asked Judge James McDonnell not to send the defendant to jail, saying prison was "rife with drugs", and "the chance of him relapsing in prison is huge".
Judge McDonnell sentenced Finlay to six months in prison suspended for five years, and he banned him from driving for life, telling the defendant that this was his last chance.
The defendant, of Rathgar Road, Dublin 6, had admitted to driving without insurance or a driving licence on the N81 Tallaght road on August 16. He failed to produce any documents.
The court heard Finlay has three previous convictions for driving without insurance. He had served lengthy sentences for robbery and assault.