Motorist disqualified at County Limerick court for drug-driving

Norma Prendiville

Reporter:

Norma Prendiville

The man was convicted at Newcastle West court

The man was convicted at Newcastle West court

JAKUB Kedron,  40 Carrig Desmond, Newcastle West was disqualified from driving for four years when he was convicted, at the local court, of drug driving or driving under the influence of an intoxicant on December 29, 2017.

In evidence to the court, Garda Griffin, Newcastle West said he was on patrol at 10pm at Station Rd, Newcastle West when he observed a car coming out of an estate without indicating to do so and then veer from side to side on the roadway. When he stopped the car, the driver Jakub Kedron produced a learner permit.

“He appeared dazed and his speech was slurred, and his eyes were bloodshot,” the garda said. He tested the accused and the sample  proved positive for cannabis and cocaine. 

He then arrested Mr Kedron who later gave a blood sample to a doctor at the Newcastle West garda station.

The test results gave over-the-limit readings of two types of cannabis, the garda explained. He confirmed to Mr Kedron’s solicitor, Enda O’Connor that he stopped his client on January 29 but the blood sample was not taken until after midnight, making it January 30.

Because of the New Year and the Bank Holiday, he posted the sample on January 2.

Mr O’Connor argued that the sample was analysed for alcohol on January 5 but the drug testing did not take place until 53 days later on February 20.

“I would have a difficulty with that,” he said, arguing that the law stated it should be done “as soon as is practicable”.

His client was prejudiced, he said, as the “provenance of the sample would deteriorate” and his client was entitled to fair process.

“It is an extraordinary length of time,” Mr O’Connor said.

Asked by Judge Cashin if he had any evidence the sample had been compromised, he said he didn’t.

“In light of that, I don’t hold with the submission, “ the judge said.

Pleading for leniency for his client, Mr O’Connor said he hadn’t taken any drugs that day but had been smoking cannabis the previous day.

“He felt he was more than capable of driving but had eaten very little on that day.”

Disqualifying Mr Kudron, the judge said: “You are paying the ultimate price. The court’s hands are tied and because of the high reading it is four years disqualification.”

The disqualification takes effect from March 21.