A LIMERICK city taxi driver has successfully appealed the decision of Chief Superintendent David Sheahan to revoke his PSV licence.
The man, who cannot be named for legal reasons, is currently the subject of a criminal investigation arising from an incident which is alleged to have happened at the beginning of September.
During an appeal which was heard in November, Chief Supt Sheahan said he met the man on two separate occasions after he became aware of the allegations against him.
He said given the nature of the allegations he decided to revoked the man’s licence “with immediate effect”.
He described to decision to revoke the licence as a “balancing exercise” between the man’s human rights and his duty to ensure public safety.
“In my view a breach of trust and responsibility occurred,” he said telling Sgt Donal Cronin that he is no longer satisfied the man is a “fit a proper person” to hold a PSV licence he said adding it was only the third time he had revoked a PSV licence during his time as head of the Limerick garda division.
Judge Marian O’Leary was told the criminal investigation is ongoing and that a file is likely to be sent to the office of the DPP early in the new year.
Last week, Inspector Padraig Byrnes said the results of forensic tests were awaited and that directions were not available from the DPP
The taxi driver’s solicitor submitted his client, who is married with a number of young children, is entitled to earn a living and that the revocation of his licence wwould affect his ability to sustain his current lifestyle and care for his family.
“He has a constitutional right to earn a livelihood,” he said
He said his client, who works as a part-time taxi driver, denies the allegations made against him and “will fight to clear his good name” if he is prosecuted.
Granting the appeal, Judge O’Leary commented the presumption of innocence applies in relation to the criminal matter.
The judge also noted there is no legal mechanism to review the decision of Chief Supt Sheahan (to revoke the licence) until next October.