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Katy French pal admits tax fraud over seven Range Rover cars

A CAR dealer pleaded guilty today to tax fraud charges relating to seven Range Rovers.

Lee Cullen (40), of Exclusive Cars in Saggart, Co Dublin, with an address in Coolmine, Saggart, pleaded guilty to seven charges concerning the evasion Vehicle Registration Tax (VRT).

Mr Cullen, a close friend of tragic model Katy French, had earlier faced 21 VRT fraud charged relating to a loss of €15,284 in tax revenue to the State.

Mr Cullen had lent Katy French a €100,000 Range Rover which she was driving on the night she was taken to hospital after a suspected cocaine overdose in December 2007.

When he appeared before Judge Patricia Ryan in Dublin Circuit Criminal Court today, defence counsel Hugh Hartnett and prosecuting counsel Dominic McGinn told the judge both sides were close to an agreement on how the case would proceed.

After a short break, the lawyers returned to the court room and Mr Cullen pleaded guilty to seven charges.

The charges concerned the evasion of VRT on seven Range Rovers between 2006 and 2007 relating to a loss of an estimated of €70,000 VRT tax to the state.

All the offences took place at the Vehicle Registration Office, St John’s House, High Street, Tallaght.

Mr Hartnett told the judge it was agreed there would be a wait of six months before the sentencing date. He added that his client would attempt to pay restitution in the mean time

Judge Ryan referred the matter of deciding on a sentencing date to her colleague Judge Patrick McCartan.