Saturday 26 May 2018

Gardaí catch boy (13) driving on Dublin's M50

Traffic on the M50 Photo: Arthur Carron
Traffic on the M50 Photo: Arthur Carron

Tom Tuite

A THEN 13-year-old boy has been spared a criminal record after he was caught driving on the M50 in Dublin.

The under-age driver appeared again at the Dublin Children’s Court on Thursday having pleaded guilty earlier to Road Traffic Act charges for driving without a licence or insurance. The offence was detected as he was heading northbound on the M50 on March 4 last year.

A probation report on the now 14-year-old boy was furnished to the court.

The boy, who remained silent during the hearing, had been co-operative with gardai after being stopped.

The teenager was accompanied to court by his foster mother and Judge John O’Connor noted the teenager had not come to further Garda attention.

Defence barrister Damian McKeone asked the court to note the boy’s young age.

Judge O’Connor said the teenager had pleaded guilty and “had a bit of history”.

He said while the boy had previous matters he was still very young. He said that he was going to “reprimand” him, adding that this was the most lenient thing he could do.

The order was made under Section 98 of the Children Act which sets out the options the court has when it comes to sentencing – including measures ranging from a formal reprimand to community service, supervised probation or a custodial sentence.

Judge O’Connor held that there was not point in imposing a driving ban on the boy who cannot legally drive.

The court heard that the reprimand will not be recorded as a conviction and will not show up as one on the Garda PULSE computer system.

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