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Thursday 18 September 2014

Nun loses €38k damages case

Sister Helen Ugbome was involved in a crash eight years ago

Ray Managh

Published 19/11/2013 | 15:55

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Sister Helen Ugbome
Sister Helen Ugbome

A JUDGE has thrown out a €38,000 damages claim by a nun for injuries she allegedly suffered in a rear-ending traffic accident eight years ago.

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Judge Jacqueline Linnane said she preferred the evidence of the other driver who told the Circuit Civil Court there had been “no bang, no crash, no impact and no accident.”

Sister Helen Ugbome, of the Nigeria-based Holy Family Sisters of the Needy, told the court she was a nurse in Connolly Hospital, Blanchardstown, Dublin, and had been driving home from night duty when the accident happened.

She said a car driven by Edel Macklin, Willow Park Avenue, Glasnevin, Dublin, had rear ended her vehicle when she was stopped at traffic lights near Hart’s Corner, Glasnevin, on January 28, 2005.

Sister Ugbome, of Grange Court, Stamullen Road, Gormanstown, Co Meath, told defence counsel William O’Brien that Ms Macklin had been dressed in her pyjamas and night gown when the accident happened about 11am.

She claimed she had suffered injuries to her neck and right shoulder and lower back.

Ms Macklin, who said she had since moved to live in Dundalk, Co Louth, told the court she had been stopped at lights when Sr Ugbome had got out of the car in front of her and had approached her with pen and paper.

She had said her car had been struck and they had exchanged addresses and insurance details. She said there had been no contact whatsoever with Ugbome’s car and she had given her details just so she could move on.

Judge Linnane said that while there was a direct conflict of evidence between both women she preferred the evidence of Ms Macklin who denied there had been any contact between the cars.

Dismissing Ugbome’s claim with costs against her the judge said she had heard evidence of Sr Ugbome having obtained a garage estimate for repairs to the back of her car arising from a previous rear-ending accident she had been involved in a month earlier.

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