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18 May 2022

Limerick motorist caught drug-driving twice in four more months

Limerick motorist caught drug-driving twice in four more months

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A YOUNG man who, his solicitor said, “has a problem with drugs” appeared before Judge Carol Ann Cooligan to answer two separate charges of drug driving.

The defendant - Noel Roche of Tullig South, Abbeyfeale - was also charged with dangerous driving but the charge was reduced to one of careless driving.

Inspector Liam Wallace told the court that on September 17, 2020, gardai encountered Mr Roche at Ballinloughnane, Carrigkerry and subsequently arrested him and brought him to Rathkeale garda station where a blood test was taken which proved positive for cocaine.

On January 11, 2021, Mr Roche was stopped at a checkpoint at Dromtrasna, Abbeyfeale and a later test proved positive for cocaine.

Then, last October 5, gardai encountered a vehicle driven by Mr Roche at the national school at Dromtrasna Hartnett.

The vehicle did a U-turn and headed towards Abbeyfeale, followed by gardai, before turning off and heading towards the school again.

The gardai followed him. The roads were narrow, the inspector said, and his speed was excessive given the character of the road. When interviewed on October 26, Mr Roche made a full admission.

Pleading for his client, solicitor Micahel O’Donnell said he was a young man, “21 this year in August”, who had a problem with drugs. He had spent a month in Ardfert trying to deal with this problem and hadn’t come to any adverse notice since, apart from the driving offence.

Judge Carol Ann Cooligan remanded Mr Roche on continuing bail and adjourned the case to May 24 to allow a probation report to be drawn up.

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