Judge urged to limit road ban as ‘world is crying out for lorry drivers’

A defence solicitor asked a judge to limit the amount of time a trucker is off the roads as the “world is crying out for lorry drivers”.

Sunday, 17th October 2021, 9:43 am
Ballymena Courthouse. INBT02-213AC

Lawyer Andy Kinney told Ballymena Magistrates Court it would be to “everybody’s benefit” for Michael McGarrity to back on the highways and said it was not a “carte blanche to allow him to drive as he pleases”.

The defendant (22), of Rea Hill Road, Newtownabbey, already had nine penalty points on his driving licence for excess speed, a defective tyre and “operating a satnav”.

He was in court for new offences whilst he was driving cars - twice using mobile phones - in Belfast and Rathkeel Road at Broughshane - and failing to wear a seat belt.

The court heard the defendant volunteers with the The People’s Kitchen charity.

Mr Kinney said the defendant was “ashamed” about the offences and accepted the “stupidity” of what he had done.

District Judge Nigel Broderick said it was “not without some hesitation” that he was exercising his discretion in the case by not banning the defendant from the roads for at least six months.

The judge said the defendant already had nine penalty points and the new offences brought an extra 12 points.

McGarrity was banned from driving for three months and fined £400.