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Lurgan man who drove over limit with no licence or insurance gets 12 month ban

'He had a good education, he obtained an honours degree but he has gone down the slippery slope of addiction to both drugs and alcohol'

Drink driving Craigavon Court

A Lurgan man who drove whilst over the limit with neither a licence nor insurance has been handed a 12 month disqualification.

The 29-year-old’s barrister told court: “This is a man with no previous motoring offences on his record….he had a good education, he obtained an honours degree but he has gone down the slippery slope of addiction to both drugs and alcohol.”

Conor McConaghy, of Downshire Avenue, pleaded guilty to driving with excess alcohol, taking a motor vehicle without authority, being an unaccompanied L driver, not displaying L plates and no insurance at Craigavon Magistrates’ Court on Friday.

Prosecution outlined that on December 5, at 4.14pm, police received a report of a suspected drink driver in the vicinity of Wellington Street in Lurgan.

The Kia Niro had been observed by members of the public being driven in an erratic manner, hitting kerbs, with its full headlights illuminated.

Officers stopped the car in Lurgan town centre and spoke with the driver, who was identified as the defendant.

McConaghy smelled of intoxicating liquor and required the assistance of officers to stand as he exited his vehicle.

A preliminary breath test was conducted at the roadside resulting in a fail. The defendant further admitted to police that he did not hold a full licence and was not insured to drive the car in question.

Whilst at Lurgan custody suite, an evidential sample of breath was obtained giving a reading of 62mgs of alcohol in 100mls of breath.

Defence barrister Damien Halloran stated: “This is a man with no previous motoring offences on his record….he had a good education, he obtained an honours degree but he has gone down the slippery slope of addiction to both drugs and alcohol.”

This was in part, according to the barrister, to McConaghy losing his father, brother and best friend in one year.

Mr Halloran stated that his client was currently not taking drugs and had “tapered off” his alcohol intake.

McConaghy was disqualified from driving for 12 months and was ordered to pay a fine of £700, along with the offender’s levy of £15, within 16 weeks.

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