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Brothers in court after one caught driving vehicle in a dangerous condition

Offences detected as one brother stopped while bringing the other oil for the tractor

Two Craigavon brothers have been fined for driving and permitting the use of a vehicle which was found to be in a dangerous condition.

Andrew Breen, 55, of Derryloste Road, pleaded guilty to using a vehicle in a dangerous condition, with no vehicle test certificate, defective windscreen, two defective lights and failing to wear a seatbelt at Craigavon Magistrates’ Court on Wednesday.

His brother, 52-year-old Joseph Breen, of Pier Rampart, was charged with permitting no vehicle test certificate, permitting the use of a vehicle in a dangerous condition and permitting two defective lights at the same court.

Court heard that on July 14 police stopped Andrew Breen driving a Mitsubishi Shogun on the Kinnego Road, Lurgan, after he was seen not wearing a seatbelt.

Checks on the vehicle showed its last MOT expired on April 1, 2016, and the vehicle had been SORN’d off the road.

Inspection of the Shogun showed that the windscreen was smashed obscuring the driver’s view and two of the vehicle’s brake lights were defective.

Police seized the vehicle which was declared as being in a dangerous condition and was also found to have an insecure battery.

Andrew Breen was cautioned along with his brother, Joseph Breen, who was the owner of the vehicle.

Defence solicitor Peter Murphy informed the court it was a “farming vehicle” which he had been told did not need to have a valid MOT so long as there were no defects.

On the day in question, he stated: “Joseph had been out in the field cutting silage and had asked Andrew to bring a gallon of oil to the field for the tractor.”

Court heard that Joseph Breen had 36 years driving experience with no convictions, while Andrew did but these were of some vintage.

Mr Murphy said Andrew wished “he had never got into the vehicle” and really should have checked it before doing so.

Joseph Breen was ordered to pay a fine of £250, along with the offender’s levy of £15, within eight weeks.

Meanwhile, his brother was handed three penalty points and fined £325, along with the offender’s levy of £15, which was also to be paid within eight weeks.

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