Friday 23 August 2019

Truck driver charged with dangerous driving causing death of man (21) in Dublin

Gerard Whyte: Friends described him as “hilarious and so kind”
Gerard Whyte: Friends described him as “hilarious and so kind”
Conor Feehan

Conor Feehan

A truck driver has been charged with dangerous driving causing the death of a 21-year-old man in Whitehall in the early hours of Friday morning.

Prince Aibangbe (50) of Williams Way in Ongar, Dublin 15, was brought before Dublin District Court at the Criminal Courts of Justice this morning where he was charged before Judge John Cheatle.

Garda David Jordan gave evidence that after the incident images and video of the truck they were trying to trace was circulated in the media and came to the attention of Aibangbe’s employer, who in turn contacted gardai in Bray.

Gardai then met with Aibangbe and his employer by arrangement at his place of employment in Blackchurch on the Naas Road.

Gardai seized the truck Aibangbe had been driving and on Saturday night he was charged with dangerous driving causing death.

The court heard that Aibangbe replied: “It happened yesterday, it was an accident.”

Gardai objected to bail.

Aibangbe’s solicitor Rory Staines said that his client is a father of eight, four of who are in his native Nigeria and four who are of school going age and living with his former partner in Malahide.

“He has been driving trucks for 31 years and has never before been involved in an accident. He is two to three years with his current employer,” said Mr Staines.

Mr Aibangbe’s former partner and family were in court.

Aibangbe has applied for Irish citizenship which has not yet been granted.

Mr Staines said his client has indicated that he didn’t realise that he had been involved in an incident.

Garda Jordan said that Mr Aibangbe fled the scene, but this was disputed by Mr Staines.

Mr Staines said that if bail was not granted his client could spend some time in custody as it would take time to prepare the case which was likely to be heard in a higher court on indictment.

He said his client has significant ties to this jurisdiction.

Judge Cheatle granted bail on condition that Aibangbe provide his own bond of €5,000, half of which was to be lodged in cash.

He also has to sign on every day in Blanchardstown garda station, provide a telephone number for gardai, and surrender his passport.

He remanded him in custody with consent to bail to appear in court at the CCJ again next Friday.

Aibangbe, wearing a green hoodie and blue tracksuit bottoms, remained silent during the hearing.

Gerard Whyte (21) who was from Ballymun in North Dublin, died after being rushed to Beaumont Hospital  following the incident which happened on the Swords Road, Whitehall, at the Collins Avenue Junction shortly after midnight on Thursday night.

It's alleged the defendant failed to remain at the scene and drove off following the incident.

Garda forensic investigators examined the scene and made an appeal for information from the public.

They also issued a photograph and video footage of the truck they were searching for.

The truck was turning left from the Swords Road onto Collins Avenue when Mr Whyte was knocked down.

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