Thursday 14 December 2017

Airport worker drops €120,000 claim after secret photos show him carrying luggage

Janis Kapteinis leaving the Four Courts. Photo: Collins
Janis Kapteinis leaving the Four Courts. Photo: Collins

Ray Managh

An Irish-based Latvian national has withdrawn personal injury claims for €120,000 against insurance companies and two of their customers after he was secretly photographed lugging suitcases on to a coach he drove while claiming he was unfit for work.

Janis Kapteinis abandoned two €60,000 damages claims in the Circuit Civil Court following forensic questioning by insurance lawyers.

Barrister Conor Kearney, who appeared with solicitors Delahunty O'Connor, told Mr Kapteinis the only reason he had earlier dropped a €25,000 claim for alleged loss of earnings was that he would have been unable to prove it.

Mr Kapteinis, a 34-year-old caterer at Dublin Airport, pulled both claims when counsel for Hertz Rent-a-Car handed Circuit Court President Mr Justice Raymond Groarke pictures of him lugging passengers' baggage on to a tour coach.

Eve Bolster, who appeared with Hertz in-house solicitor Michael Brennan, told Mr Kapteinis, of Ashton Green, Swords, Co Dublin, he had been secretly photographed parking and collecting his coach away from his home so he would not be suspected of driving for the bus company.

When handed one of the photographs by Judge Groarke and asked had he driven the bus when he claimed he was unable to work, Mr Kapteinis said he had done so about four times a month as a favour.

Judge Groarke was told Mr Kapteinis had been involved in road traffic accidents in November 2013 involving an Enniskillen, Co Fermanagh, motorist and in December 2014 involving Hertz and had claimed that in the first accident he had suffered back injuries which had been exacerbated by the second crash. He claimed neither crash had been his fault.

He denied suggestions he had been involved in two other accidents which had not been disclosed to legal teams for either defendant.

Following a brief adjournment, counsel for Mr Kapteinis told the court his client was withdrawing both his damages claims.

Judge Groarke dismissed both claims and awarded costs against Mr Kapteinis.

Irish Independent

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