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Woman went 'off the rails' after death of her husband


Margaret McDonagh

Margaret McDonagh

Margaret McDonagh

A BANNED driver who was stopped by gardai behind the wheel of a car just outside the family house claimed she went "off the rails" following the death of her husband.

Margaret McDonagh (34) begged a judge not to send her to jail, saying she is no longer drinking and is focused on looking after her children.

Judge John Lindsay imposed a six-month sentence suspended for 18 months. He also imposed a seven-year driving ban.

The defendant, of Rossfield Avenue in Tallaght, admitted before Tallaght District Court to driving without insurance or a driving licence near her home on January 15, 2014.

The court heard McDonagh has three previous convictions for driving without insurance.

Defence solicitor Kevin Tunney said McDonagh's husband died a decade ago, leaving her with three children to rear.

Mr Tunney said McDonagh subsequently met a new partner and had three children with him. However, he suffered a heart attack and passed away last year.

The solicitor asked Judge Lindsay to be as lenient as possible, saying McDonagh went off the rails following the death of her husband, but is no longer drinking.

He also said she was concerned about what would happen to her children if she was sent to jail.