A Judge has overturned a decision by a Garda Chief Superintendent not to grant a taxi license to a Co Donegal man.

Tony Pyper appeared at Falcarragh District Court today appealing a decision by Chief Supt Terry McGinn to refuse him a small PSV license to drive a taxi.

The father-of-two was found guilty in January of having no car insurance, after he had originally applied for his taxi license.

He was contacted by Gardai to explain that his application for the taxi license was being refused.

Chief Supt McGinn met with Mr Pyper on May 24th last and explained to him that her hands were tied on the matter but advised him to get legal advice.

She told the court that because Mr Pyper was applying for a license to drive people in a taxi and that he had a conviction for not having insurance she had to refuse his application.

She added that she couldn’t give you a license but if the Judge saw fit to grant the license then that is a matter for the court.

Solicitor Frank Dorrian told the court that his client already holds a heavy PSV license and this entitled him to drive lorries and coaches which could carry 50 people but was refused a small taxi license.

“Where is the logic in that,” asked Mr Dorrian.

He said the original insurance breach happened when Mr Piper, of McNeely Villas, Oldtown, Letterkenny, took his mother’s car thinking he was insured on it and that he had no other convictions.

Having heard all the applications, Judge Paul Kelly said he was going to allow Mr Piper’s appeal and grant him a license.

He said while it seemed to him that the Chief Superintendent was within her rights to refuse the taxi license, it did appear to be disproportionate to the conviction.

He added that the court has already felt it appropriate that Mr Piper kept his driving license and that he will no doubt have difficulty getting insurance because of his previous conviction for not having insurance.


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