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HGV driver appealing ban despite judge slamming ‘appalling’ and ‘reckless’ driving

Armagh Courthouse

An HGV driver who drove in excess of 100mph on a 60mph zone has appealed the judge’s decision to ban him from the roads for three months.

Adrian Rafferty, 26, of Castle Drive, Dungannon, pleaded guilty at Armagh Magistrates’ Court on Tuesday to excess speed.

The incident occurred on January 22 at around 3.30am, when police spotted an Audi A4 driving “too close” to the car in front of it on the Portadown Road.

Then as the road widened the defendant overtook the car in front driving at a speed of around 90mph.

Police signalled Rafferty to stop but he failed to do so increasing his speed further above 100mph.

When the defendant did stop and was questioned by officers replied by saying “well obviously I was in the wrong”.

He would later deny this comment and state he did not exceed the 60mph limit.

Defence counsel told court Rafferty took issue with the speed and believed he was travelling at around 70mph.

She added that the defendant did not stop at first as he did not see the car behind.

Court heard Rafferty has been an HGV driver since 2016 and has had no driving issues since 2007.

District Judge Paul Copeland told the defendant “this is an appalling piece of driving to be in excess of 100mph on roads of this nature is reckless”.

Rafferty was disqualified from driving for three months and ordered to pay a fine of £250, along with the offender’s levy of £15, within 10 weeks.

Defence counsel stated they intended to appeal this decision and so the defendant was released on his own bail of £400.

Judge Copeland granted Rafferty the permission to drive during the intervening period.

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