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Garda who had no NCT or car tax suspended

GARDA management have suspended a member of the force after he was convicted of having no tax or NCT on his car.

The action was taken against Garda Michael O'Shaughnessy, who is based at Henry Street station in Limerick and is a member of the traffic corps.

He was convicted at Limerick District Court and ordered to pay €3,500 to charity after Judge Eugene O'Kelly told him he was not above the law.

A senior officer said last night that an internal investigation was now under way into the incident that led to his court conviction -- and also into the evidence given in court.

A garda inspector had told the court that he spotted Gda O'Shaughnessy at Mill Lane, Limerick, on both May 9 and May 31 last year.

He said the car had not been taxed since March 31 and the NCT on the vehicle had been out of date since October 2010.

But Garda O'Shaughnessy denied the charges and in direct evidence said that he was not in Limerick on May 31, and on May 9 was driving a different vehicle.

During his suspension, the garda's pay will be stopped. But he will be entitled to a suspension allowance, which varies at between 70pc and 95pc of his pay.

During the court case, Gda O'Shaughnessy's solicitor described his client as the most experienced member of the Limerick traffic corps and claimed there was a "subtext" to the case.

The judge said he was satisfied that the charges had been proven against Gda O'Shaughnessy but he said he was troubled about the implications that a court conviction would have for the garda's career.

The judge adjourned the case until October 31.

Irish Independent