Monday 19 August 2019

Driver used fake no-claims bonus cert to 'save money', court hears

Marian Mihai charged with fraudulent use of a no claims bonus cert
Photo: Douglas O'Connor
Marian Mihai charged with fraudulent use of a no claims bonus cert Photo: Douglas O'Connor

A MOTORIST who used a fake no-claims bonus certificate to apply for car insurance was due to be married and trying to save money, a court has heard.

Marian Mihai (25) used the forged certificate when he tried to buy a policy online, but it was immediately noticed by the insurance company, which contacted gardai.

Judge Gerard Jones put him on a one-year peace bond after he admitted a forged document charge.

Mihai, of Ashley Hall, St Edmunds, Lucan, pleaded guilty to using a counterfeit no-claims bonus certificate with the intention of inducing another person to accept it as genuine.

The incident happened on a date unknown between last December 14 and April 25.

Sgt Maria Callaghan told Blanchardstown District Court the accused used a counterfeit Axa no-claims bonus certificate when attempting to buy car cover online from RSA Insurance.

When he submitted the certificate, it was identified as counterfeit and the policy was cancelled immediately before any documents were issued.

RSA referred the matter to gardai and the accused made full admissions.

There was no loss to the insurance company.

Mihai met gardai by appointment and was co-operative, his solicitor John Wood said.

He had no previous convictions.

“It was just an attempt to try to save money,” Mr Wood said, adding that the court would be aware of the high cost of insurance premiums these days.

“The garda is of the opinion that this man is unlikely to come to garda attention again,” he added.

The accused was from Romania and had come to Ireland three years ago, Mr Wood said. He was due to be married shortly.

He had worked as a chef and kitchen porter and was now employed in construction.

The judge initially said he would fine Mihai, but following submissions by Mr Wood he decided to instead bind him to the peace for a year.

He also granted free legal aid after seeing a statement of his financial means.


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