Thursday 22 August 2019

District Court Round-Up

Judge's gavel
Judge's gavel

Incessant bark

A Tagoat resident told the District Court how a neighbour's dog barks excessively.

Stephen Bacon from Kilsoran in Tagoat took his action against David Condron, also from Kilsoran.

The complainant stated that he owned three dogs while his neighbour had four.

He explained that the Condron dogs are left out in a small yard during the day.

His concern was with a mongrel which looks like a black collie.

'It just keeps barking,' stated Bacon. He described that bark as sometimes resembling a terrified scream.

He was granted an order requiring Condron to exercise due control over the animal.

The judge told the complainant to serve a copy of the order on the mongrel's owner.

If that does not bring about an improvement, then the matter may be brought to court again.

Tree fall verdict

A Wexford householder was held responsible for damage to a car in a factory car park cased by a branch falling from a tree.

Vehicle owner Linda Byrne from Marshalstown was given a District Court decree for €2,203, plus €125 towards witness costs, against John Higginbotham of Whitemills, North Killeens.

The case dated back to a storm which blew across Wexford in February of last year taking its toll on the leylandii trees beside the Conrvertac plant.

The evidence was heard in full at a court sitting in June but Judge Gerard Haughton waited until July 20 to deliver his verdict.

He felt that Higginbotham was negligent in failure to maintain the trees at a reasonable height.

However, the judge stressed that Higginbotham (who was sued along with his wife Catherine) had acted reasonably and honourably throughout.

The case was brought to court by the house owners' insurance company, he noted.

Guilty pleas

Michael Clancy (18) of 1 John Paul Place in Murrintown attended the District Court to plead guilty to a string of offences.

The teenaged defendant admitted counts of burglary and theft as well as public order offences.

Clancy was one of three intruders who burgled the function room in Whites Hotel on May 18 and removed €500 of alcohol.

Just one bottle was later recovered.

The following day, he removed three bottles from Coney's shop in Curracloe without paying.

On the same date, he and another individual stole vodka to the value of €32 from Aldi in Newtown Road.

He was later found very unsteady on his feet in Charlotte Street where he threatened gardaí who approached him.

Back on June 16 in 2013 he took part in a disturbance at the Scaville Lodge in Duncormick following an 18th birthday party.

Defending solicitor Jimmy Murphy pointed out that all the misbehaviour was drink related.

He asked the court to put Clancy in touch with probation staff with a view to setting up an alcohol counselling programme.

Judge Gerard Haughton agreed, adjourning until September 21 to allow preparation of a probation report.

In the mean time, the defendant was ordered off the drink and told to remain at home each night from 9 p.m. to 8 a.m.

High reading

The level of alcohol present in the system of drink drive offender John Murphy (51) from 2 Beachfield Manor in Screen was described as extremely high by Judge Gerard Haughton.

Murphy was intercepted behind the wheel of a 2014 Dublin registered vehicle at Portersland in New Ross on March 31 and the urine sample taken after his arrest contained more than four times the legal limit, at 324 mgs alcohol per 100 millilitres.

The defendant, father of two adult children, was in court where his solicitor stated that his client was drawing social welfare and living with elderly parents.

Murphy said he had lost his role as a business development manager because of the pending court case.

He sought postponement of the inevitable driving ban as he reckoned he would have to travel to Dublin in search of work, as his skills were not in demand in Wexford.

However, Judge Haughton was reluctant to postpone because the reading was so high and because he foresaw that the offender might have difficulties obtaining insurance cover.

Murphy told the court that he had been insured in the past to drive company cars but now had no insurance and no vehicle of his own.

He was told to return to court on July 27 and see in the mean time if he could obtain a quote for cover.

Drinagh family

With directions from the Director of Public Prosecutions awaited, the drug dealing case against members of a Drinagh family was adjourned until September 21.

Sale/supply charges were mentioned at the District Court sitting in Ardcavan on July 20 against: Billy Connors (61), his wife Maggie (55), and their sons Johnny (27), James (30) and Paddy (25). The address of all five defendants was given as Rosemount, Drinagh.

Charges alleged mis-use of drugs offences on various dates from June of last year to April of this year. Locations involved included Grogan's Road, the car park at Wexford Tesco, North Main Street, Keyser's Lane, the car park at The Faythe Londis and Wygram as well as Rosemount.

Judge Gerard Haughton also adjourned drug sale/supply charges against Terry Hurley (34) of 8 Woodview Drive, Adamstown and Jade Power (21) of Rosemount, Drinagh.

Cheque fraud

Two cheques worth a total of €4,235 were at the heart of a case mentioned at the District Court sitting in Ardcavan on July 20.

Before the court was 44 year old Dermot Corrigan from Bessmount House near Enniscorthy.

He stood charged with forgery, theft or passing a 'false instruments' at C&D Providers in Larkin's Cross on October 29, 2013.

The case was put back to September 7.


Judge Gerard Haughton had the benefit of a probation report as he considered the case of Joe Cullimore (46) from Apartment 2, 65 William Street Upper, Wexford.

The defendant stood accused of breaching an order in force at 3 Spawell Crescent in Wexford on January 10 last year.

Cullimore was represented in the District Court by solicitor Nigel Allen who revealed that his client was the youngest in his family, with five older sisters.

Mr Allen described the case as a complex and sad matter, affecting a well respected family.

The court was told that since the incident in Spawell Crescent, the accused man's sisters had organised visits allowing him to see his mother.

She was reported to be in good health and staying at the Knockeen nursing home on the outskirts of Wexford.

The judge noted that Cullimore, son of a well known butcher, now deceased, had not cooperated with the court's probation service.

There was an issue as to whether or not Cullimore follows what is going on.

The case was adjourned to October 5 to allow preparation of an up to date probation report.

The accused, who pleaded guilty to breach of the protection order, was warned that if he fails to cooperate then he faces the prospect of being remanded in custody for psychiatric examination.

Drank wine

The brother of drink drive accused Gianfranco di Fabio (55) of 4 Hillcrest, Mulgannon was in court to provide a translation service to his sibling.

The restaurant worker from Italy was stopped by Garda Niall Brophy on the night of March 7 last year at the wheel of a red Citroen in King Street.

He gave a urine sample which showed that he was a couple of mgs over the legal limit for alcohol.

Gardaí discovered a small quantity of cannabis in the back of the patrol car in which he was brought to the barracks.

He said at the time that he had one and a half glasses of wine and that he was coming from work when he was stopped.

He had a full Italian driving licence but this was not produced immediately, so the opportunity for his drink drive offence to be dealt with by way of a postal fine passed.

His solicitor John Murphy felt it would be unfair to impose a disqualification, mandatory in court cases, in such circumstances.

The judge advised Mr Murphy to make this case to the DPP and adjourned to September 21, when the issue of the cannabis possession will also be considered.

Magnet warning

Truckers who use magnets to interfere with tachograph records were warned by Judge Gerard Haughton that they face the likelihood of losing their licences.

The judge was responding to the latest case brought by gardaí working at Rosslare Europort who have brought a series of prosecutions.

Father of two Jaroslaw Palasz (46), with an address at Kilpatrick House in Mullingar was fined €500, the conviction following 25 previously unblemished years at the wheel.

The judge took opportunity to comment that such offences are deliberate acts by drivers responsible for heavy goods vehicles.

He made it clear that he will consider disqualification in all future such cases.

Leg break

A broken leg was blamed for the non-appearance in court of Thomas Kelly (31) from Donooney, Adamstown.

He was due at the courthouse in Ardcavan to deal with burglary and theft charges.

Solicitor Tim Cummings acknowledged that he had been supplied with the relevant statements.

However, he added that Kelly had been in contact to say that he had sustained the leg fracture.

The case stands adjourned to September 7.

No lawyer

Shoplifting accused Anne O'Toole (51) from 14 Gort na Sline in Enniscorthy had no solicitor to represent her at the District Court on July 20.

She told Judge Gerard Haughton that she was not working before he assigned her legal aid and the services of Enniscorthy based solicitor Julie Breen.

She was accused of theft from three premises in Wexford town on December 11 last.

Garda Sergeant Gary Rayner alleged that property from the three shops, worth a total of €344, was found in her possession.

She was told to consult Ms Breen and return to court on September 17.

Probation Act

A contribution of €250 to the Cornmarket project left Lee Pitman of Apartment 1, 95 North Main Street, Wexford without a conviction for theft.

Solicitor Tim Cummings confirmed that a receipt from Cornmarket was in court on July 20.

The charge on the court list was one of theft from Xtra Vision in North Main Street on December 14 last.

The judge allowed Pitman the benefit of the Probation Act.

Threat case

Phone and text threats made to a former partner landed Craig Pitman (22) of 13 Inisfail Court in Wexford before Judge Gerard Haughton.

The location of the offence was given on the summons as Airdownes Great in Broadway and it dated back to April of last year.

Garda Sergeant Gary Rayner told the District Court that the couple broke up that Easter.

His solicitor was concerned about the mental health of his client and he successfully applied for a probation report to be compiled.

The judge asked gardaí to notify the injured party of the adjournment date of September 21 so that she could attend court if she wished.


Pat Walsh (41) from Mulrankin, Bridgetown was caught over the limit for alcohol when driving at Sotton's Cross in Mulrankin on December 7.

The father of two school going children pleaded guilty when his case was called at the District Court on July 20.

The court was told that he was the sole earner in his household before a fine of €400 and a three year disqualification were handed down.

The ban from driving will take effect from November 1.


Dean Murphy (18) of 23 Distillery Road in Wexford faced a charge of possessing knuckledusters at Ferndale Park on March 28.

The court was told that the prosecution was initiated after Murphy was stopped and searched by Garda Sergeant Casey.

Solicitor Jimmy Murphy said his client was on an employment skills scheme. The case was adjourned to September 21.

Warrant issued

An arrest warrant was handed down by Judge Gerard Haughton for the arrest of Paddy Connors (37) of 34 Windmill Hills, Belvedere Road in Wexford.

He was not present to answer when his name was called at the courthouse in Ardcavan on July 20.

He was scheduled to deal with a drugs possession charge arising from a search at the garda station in Wexford on November 24 last.

No conviction

Cannabis worth an estimated €30 is set to cost Darren Sinnott (25) of 7 St Mary's Terrace, Carrig-on-Bannow a sum of €500.

Sinnott admitted having the drug in his car on July 5 when it was stopped at John Street by Garda Richard Fitzgerald.

The District Court was told by solicitor Ian Ryan that his client, a fisherman, was now four months off cannabis.

Judge Gerard Haughton indicated that he would give Sinnott the benefit of the Probation Act if he makes a €500 contribution to the Cornmarket project by October 5.

Not in court

Judge Gerard Haughton made out a warrant for the arrest of drug possession accused Keith Brennan (35) of Two Hoots, Castlepallister, Carne when he failed to put in an appearance at the District Court on July 20.

He was due to deal with a charge alleging an offence at Commodore Barry park in Rosslare on September 7 last but the warrant was handed down when there was no sign of him at the courthouse in Ardcavan.

DPP ruling

Michael Beaver (44) of 9 Wygram Court, Davitt Road North, Wexford stood charged with having illicit drugs for sale or supply at his home on February 19, 2013

The District Court was told that the case will be referred to the Circuit Court if a not guilty plea is entered.

Judge Gerard Haughton granted a statements order and put the case back to September 21.

Late charge

A delay in charging assault accused Patrick Power (43) of Park, Duncormick was not fatal to the prosecution, Judge Gerard Haughton ruled.

The case was taken following a complaint by the defendant's brother John Power (49) - also of Park, Duncormick.

The matter arose from an incident at Sea Lane on January 7 in 2013.

The case was put back to October 5.

Also put back to the same date was an assault charge against John Power, dating back to November 30, 2011

Failed to show

Motoring offence accused John Wall (22) from 27 Cross Street in New Ross was named on a warrant made out for his arrest on July 20.

The accused was not in court to meet the charges preferred by Garda Niall Brophy.

Wall was accused of being on the road without insurance and with giving the garda a false name at Killurin on April 2.

Will pay compo

Michael Murphy (20) of Assaly, Killinick entered guilty pleas as motor insurance and theft charges were considered by the District Court on July 20.

Defending solicitor Ian Ryan entered the pleas to offences at Walsheslough in Rosslare and Devereux Haulage in Kilmore Quay.

The two matters came to light when Murphy was stopped in February at Walsheslough where he admitted that he had no insurance cover and also that he had taken 300 litres of diesel from a lorry.

He was allowed until November 2 to come up with compensation for the owner of the fuel.

Wexford People