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Saturday 21 April 2018

Ex-footballer awarded undisclosed sum over hit-and-run but drops €120k claims

Former Preston North End and St Pats player Michael Keane. Photo: Collins Courts
Former Preston North End and St Pats player Michael Keane. Photo: Collins Courts

Former professional footballer Michael Keane has won an undisclosed sum for a hit-and-run damages claim at the Circuit Civil Court.

However, Mr Keane who played under David Moyes at Preston North End and later for St Pats in Dublin, had two other personal injury claims totalling €120,000 struck out.

Mr Keane, of Blackhorse Grove, Dublin 7, succeeded in a claim he brought against an uninsured driver and the Motor Insurers Bureau of Ireland (MIBI) after he was hit by a car in Arran Court, Smithfield, Dublin.

Judge Mary O'Malley Costello dismissed two separate €60,000 claims by Mr Keane (34) after she was told that he was withdrawing both of them following talks and a private viewing of video evidence. She struck them out with no further order.

Speeding

The judge had part heard an assessment of damages in the MIBI case in which liability had earlier been conceded when she was told after the lunch adjournment that the case had been settled in Mr Keane's favour for an undisclosed sum.

Mr Keane had told the court he was walking across Arran Court at about 8pm on February 12, 2014 when a speeding car collided with him, knocking him into the air and onto the bonnet. The driver stopped momentarily, reversed back to him and said: "Listen, I have no insurance. I have to get out of here."

Mr Keane told the court he had time to note the registration number and later reported the matter to gardai.

He went home that evening but the pain down his right side and in his lower back had become so unbearable that by 2am he had to go to the Accident and Emergency Unit at the Mater Hospital for treatment. Mr Keane said he was examined and given painkilling medication before returning home.

Barrister Frank Duggan, counsel for the MIBI, cross-examined Mr Keane over a number of other accidents he was alleged to have been involved in.

Mr Keane said that while he had suffered injuries in a number of accidents prior to the three before the court yesterday he had made only one claim and had been awarded damages of more than €9,000.

He told Mr Duggan he had been a claims handler with AXA Insurance for five years and was acquainted with how claims were dealt with.

Mr Duggan asked him about playing for St Pats Athletic and he told the court he had swapped clubs a number of times.

Slipped

When Mr Duggan then referred to a newspaper article that had stated St Pats "threw you out because you were too fat", Mr Keane said: "Pats lost that case against me … that newspaper shouldn't have got away with that report."

Mr Keane's legal team objected to cross-examination about issues not associated with the assessment before the court.

In the two €60,000 claims withdrawn earlier by Mr Keane he had sued P&N Oil Ltd, which owned a Maxol filling station at Constitution Hill, Dublin 7, where he alleged he had slipped; and Shafahat Ali, of Allen Terrace, Phibsborough, Dublin, over a car accident in July 2014.

Barrister Conor Kearney had entered full defences in both claims which were struck out by Judge O'Malley Costello.

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