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Restricted driver caught doing over 70mph on A1 with a baby in the car

'You are risking your child’s life driving at a speed over the legal limit'

A restricted driver caught travelling on the A1 at over 70mph with a baby in her car has been disqualified from driving for a month.

Court heard the 28-year-old was just two months away from ending her restricted driver status when she was spotted by police.

Maria McClelland, of Cairnmore Drive, Newry, pleaded guilty to being an ‘R’ driver exceeding the 45mph speed limit at Craigavon Magistrates’ Court on Friday.

Court heard police observed the defendant travelling on the A1, Dromore, in a Seat Leon at between 75mph and 79 mph.

They followed McClelland for six miles as she maintained this speed in the overtaking lane towards Lisburn.

Police stopped the defendant at Sprucefield to find that she was a restricted driver and was carrying a baby in the car along with two other passengers.

Defence counsel stated McClelland was the mother of a young child and was 10 months into her restricted period when stopped by police.

District Judge Bernie Kelly told the defendant: “You are risking your child’s life driving at a speed over the legal limit.”

She added: “It is too high a speed for her to keep her licence, it’s either a short disqualification or penalty points which means she has to resit her test.”

McClelland was disqualified for four weeks and ordered to pay a fine of £150, along with the offender’s levy of £15, within six weeks.

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