A Donegal businessman has been fined €2,500 after illegal diesel was found in one of his lorries.

Patrick Bonar, of Calloncar, Drumkeen, appeared at Letterkenny District Court this week.

The court heard that one of Mr Bonar’s lorries was stopped by customs officers at Dooballagh, Letterkenny on May 6th, 2010.

When tested it was discovered that the lorry contained illegal green diesel after officers used markers to test the fuel.

The court heard that the driver of the lorry, Martin McClelland, had a case against him dismissed at a previous court sitting.

Patrick Bonar told the court that he had spoken with Mr McCelland after he was approached by customs officers.

He said Mr McClelland had told him there was no white diesel at the company’s yard and that he had taken 10 gallons of green diesel.

However Mr Bonar said he had no hand, act or part in putting the green diesel in the offending lorry.

He said he had two tanks at his yard and both were 5,000 litre tanks which workers were well-aware of.

He said he could not explain why Mr McCelland had said there was no white diesel in the tank when there had been.

He said both tanks were clearly marked and that all employees were aware of the tanks and what they contained when filling various equipment and up to 13 lorries.

“He put it in and he should not have,” said Mr Bonar.

However Judge Paul Kelly said that as the owner of the business, Mr Bonner had a responsibility for all his vehicles.

He found Mr Bonar guilty, fined him a mandatory fine of €2,500 and allowed him four months to pay.


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