Tuesday 24 October 2017

Lorry driver's 'false claims' for €60k damages arising from road accident dismissed

Stock picture
Stock picture

Ray Managh

A 50-year-old jobless lorry driver today failed in a €60,000 damages claim for personal injuries arising from a road traffic accident, less than an hour after he had settled a similar road traffic injury claim against his wife.

After Judge Jacqueline Linnane threw out Ireneusz Larus’s second claim, barrister Frank Martin, counsel for the defendants, told the Circuit Civil Court he would be seeking to seize the earlier award of €12,500 to meet his client’s legal costs.

Mr Larus has the fixed address of Crumlin Road, Crumlin, Dublin 12.

Judge Linnane, accepting an undertaking from Larus’s solicitors that they would hold on to any cheque payable to him to settle the earlier case, said the cost of false claims was one of the reasons insurance companies put forward for insurance premiums going up.

Mr Martin, who appeared with Tormeys Solicitors, for lorry-driver Brendan Downey and his employer Dpf consultants Limited, trading as Alltrans, told the court Larus had presented false and misleading evidence on oath about the accident and his health.

Larus had also sued his wife Barbara (Barita) Larus for up to €60,000 in another Circuit Civil Court appearance on Wednesday morning and had told Circuit Court President, Mr Justice Raymond Groarke, the case had been settled in his favour together with his legal costs.

Less than an hour later Larus told Mr Martin in Judge Linnane’s court that he had settled the case against his wife for €12,500 with costs.  He said he had been a passenger in his wife’s car when she had to swerve to avoid a cyclist.

Her foot had slipped off the brake onto the accelerator and they had crashed at 40 kilometres an hour into a stone wall.  In the second accident he said he had been driving along Dolphin’s Barn, Dublin, when Downey had swerved into his lane, causing him to swerve against a kerb in order to avoid a collision.

“And you claim that after the arrival of an ambulance, two fire tenders and two garda cars you were taken on a stretcher by ambulance to St James’s Hospital,” Mr Martin said.

Mr Martin said the defence would call evidence that his car was not damaged nor even the tyres scuffed despite Mr Larus seeking to recover €3,324 for repairs to his car four months after he had sold it allegedly as an unsafe vehicle because of inner damage to the chassis.

Judge Linnane told Mr Martin she would accede to his request to have Mr Larus’s case dismissed on the basis there had been false and misleading evidence given to the court.

She said Mr Larus had sought in a sworn affidavit to back up his €3,324 repairs claim despite the car never having been repaired.  He had sworn in evidence to the court that he had no physiotherapy despite having told two doctors he did have.

“I have found he has given false and misleading information and I have dismissed his case with costs against him and I am refusing a stay to facilitate consideration of an appeal,” Judge Linnane said.

When Mr Martin applied for leave to bring a motion for the appointment of a receiver over the €12,500 settlement against his wife, Judge Linnane accepted the undertaking by Larus’s solicitors to hold on to any money forwarded to them until further order of the court.

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