Limerick man admits ‘drug driving’ while banned

David Hurley

Reporter:

David Hurley

Limerick Courthouse
A YOUNG man who admitted ‘drug driving’ while he was disqualified was sentenced to seven months’ imprisonment.

A YOUNG man who admitted ‘drug driving’ while he was disqualified was sentenced to seven months’ imprisonment.

Mark Barry, aged 25, of Garryglass Avenue, Ballinacurra Weston pleaded guilty to several road traffic offences relating to a detection on February 28, last.

Sergeant Donal Cronin told Limerick District Court the defendant was observed driving erratically at Childers Road and that he was stopped by gardai a short time at Colbert Avenue, Janesboro.

He was arrested and processed and a sample of his urine, which was sent for analysis, proved positive for cannabinoids.

Sgt Cronin said Barry, who has more than 110 previous convictions, was banned from driving at the time and, therefore, did not have insurance of a driving licence.

Judge Mary Larkin was told the defendant was sentenced to five months’ imprisonment and disqualified for 12 years at Ennis District Court in 2007 after he pleaded guilty to a number of offences including dangerous driving.

He has been disqualified for other road traffic offences in Limerick since but all of those bans are running concurrently with the 12 year driving ban.

Solicitor Kate Fanning said her client – a father of one – is “no stranger” to gardai but acknowledges if he doesn’t get his life together he will be in and out of prison for the rest of his life.

She said Barry completed his Junior Certificate in custody and that prior to that he had no formal education.

She submitted that a lot of his convictions were a “direct result” of his addiction to cannabis – which is taking measures to address.

Ms Fanning said her client had cooperated with gardai and pleaded guilty early – saving court time and money.

Imposing sentence, Judge Larkin commented that Barry has not covered himself in glory in the past and that she hopes he can turn his life around.

However, she noted that he has served prison sentences in the past for similar offences and has not learned his lesson.

The judge imposed a number of consecutive prison sentences, which totalled seven months.

Barry was also disqualified from driving for three years but the ban will run concurrently to the current 12-year-ban, which, Judge Larkin noted, remains in place until 2019.