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Driver who lied in crash is caught out

A MOTORIST who crashed into another car left the scene and gave gardai a false name and address as he walked away.

Gerard Whelan (33) insisted he was on his way home from a visit to his ex-partner and children and had nothing to do with the accident in north Dublin.

Judge Anthony Halpin convicted him of uninsured driving and giving a garda a false name, telling him he "didn't believe a word".

Whelan, of, Moatview Court, Priorswood was fined €1,000 and given a three-month suspended jail sentence. He maintained he was not driving at the time and "panicked" when the garda asked his name.



NOTEBOOK

Garda Derek Grant told Dublin District Court he went to the scene at the junction of Ballybough Road and Spring Garden Street at 4pm on April 11, 2009.

The other driver said a woman in the car that had rear-ended him was not the driver and gave a description of the accused.

The garda stopped Whelan walking down the road and he admitted he had been driving the car.

He gave his name as David Gately, of Moatview Court, and signed the garda's notebook.

However, when the officer summonsed him, David Gately came to Store Street Garda Station and he was "clearly not the man" the garda had spoken to.

Whelan was later identified and prosecuted. He had no insurance or valid licence.

The accused told the court he saw the accident on his way home and kept walking. He said when the garda approached him, he denied driving.

"I did panic," he said. "Basically, all (the garda) wanted me to do was sign the book."

Judge Halpin said: "I don't believe a word Mr Whelan has said."

The accused had 32 previous convictions, including nine motoring offences.

aphelan@herald.ie


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