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Successful businessman unaware of disqualification bought and insured two cars

A defence solicitor said it would be “bizarre behaviour to buy two cars and then insure them”  if his client was actually aware he was disqualified from driving, a court has heard.

A 35-year-old from Cornakinnegar Road in Lurgan appeared before Craigavon Magistrates’ Court on Wednesday charged with driving while disqualified and driving without insurance.

The court heard that around 7.30pm on May 9, last year, police noticed a small female child perched on the handlebars of a quad driven by the defendant in the Larkfield Meadows area of Craigavon.

During police interview the man said he was unaware he had been disqualified for 12 months the previous June.

However, a defence solicitor argued that his client was telling the truth, and was so unaware he actually purchased two vehicles for his successful business – and insured them both.

He added that the quad was a children’s 50cc quad that he had taken to the park for a test run.

In relation to the disqualification, the defence stated that the notice of conviction more than likely went back to a previous address but added that the onus was on his client to find out what the penalty was for his conviction.

The court heard that the defendant – a father-of-three – is a well-established businessman with a successful company he runs with his wife.

Any further disqualification would have a “major impact on his business” as he is the “main bread winner”, counsel argued.

District Judge Brian Archer handed down a one month prison sentence, suspended for a year, as well as one month ban from the roads in relation to driving while disqualified.

For no insurance, the 35-year-old was given a conditional discharge and a one month driving ban.

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