A TEENAGER has pleaded guilty to dangerous driving causing death after three of his friends were killed in an horrific crash just over a year ago.
The Irish Independent has learned that the 17-year-old male -- who cannot be named for legal reasons -- also pleaded guilty to charges of drink driving and dangerous driving on New Year's Eve 2008 when he appeared before the Circuit Court in Nenagh, Co Tipperary.
Three neighbouring parishes in north Tipperary were in mourning 12 months ago following the deaths of Stuart Donnellan (14), Padraig Bourke (16) and Adrian O'Brien (17) in the single-vehicle crash on the Nenagh to Dolla road.
The driver, then aged 16, and a 15-year-old girl spent a lengthy spell recovering from their injuries in hospital.
However, following their release, the pair was questioned by gardai and the young man was later charged. He appeared in court three months ago.
"He pleaded guilty to dangerous driving causing death, and also to drink driving and dangerous driving," a spokeswoman for Tipperary Circuit Court confirmed yesterday.
"The case was adjourned until May 4 pending the completion of a number of reports."
It is understood that these reports include victim impact statements, a psychological report on the defendant, and the report of a facial surgeon who operated on the defendant's extensive injuries.
Garda sources have indicated that further charges relating to the incident are now unlikely.
The vehicle was not taxed at the time of the crash, gardai confirmed.