Sunday 19 January 2020

Callely fined for failing to display NCT disc

Tom Tuite

FORMER Fianna Fail TD and senator Ivor Callely was fined €150 yesterday for driving a car with no NCT disc.

Mr Callely, who resigned from the Seanad after he was at the centre of a controversy surrounding his expenses, had received a summons for a road traffic offence of using a car without displaying a valid NCT disc, at Springdale Road, Raheny, in north Dublin, on July 7 last year.

The 53-year-old, with an address at St Lawrence's Road, in Clontarf, was not present for his hearing at Dublin District Court.

A guilty plea was entered and traffic Garda Dominic Noonan told Judge Bridget Reilly that when stopped Mr Callely told him that the car he was driving had passed the NCT. But Gda Noonan said it transpired that it had not; the car was tested five days later but it failed, then tested again and passed on July 14.

The former TD and senator had thought the car, which belonged to his wife, was exempted from the NCT -- however, it was clarified that the exemption in question only applied to motor tax, the court heard.

Judge Reilly fined Mr Callely €150, which she ordered must be paid within two months. Otherwise, he will face a 10-day sentence in default.

Last year, the Standards in Public Office Commission conducted a probe into irregular mobile phone expenses claims. The political ethics watchdog then sent a file to the DPP.

Expenses

It emerged in 2010 that Mr Callely had claimed almost €3,000 in expenses in 2007 for buying mobile phones and car kits from a company that had stopped trading in 1994.

He was elected to the Dail for Dublin North Central in 1989, but lost his seat in 2007.

He did not win election to the Seanad that year but was appointed as one of then Taoiseach Bertie Ahern's nominees. However, he did not run for the Dail or the Seanad in the 2010 elections.

Last year, the former junior minister was also fined €60 at Dublin District Court for holding a mobile phone while he was driving his car.

That incident happened at Ballybough Road, in Dublin city centre, in October, 2010.

Mr Callely told the court that he had been talking into a hands-free device, but the judge accepted garda evidence that the former senator was holding a mobile phone while driving.

Irish Independent

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