A MAN who sped off from Gardaí a while driving an untaxed jeep towing an unsecured load has been fined in court.

William Peoples (56) of Drumkeen was before Letterkenny District Court in connection with the incident on May 14, 2020.

Gardaí observed a Landcruiser jeep traveling towards Drumkeen. Conditions were dry but dark and the load of gates being towed on the jeep appeared unsecured to Gardaí.

The tax on the vehicle was out since 2017 and there were no lights illuminated the back of the trailer.

“He was traveling at close to or over 100km/ph and he was stopped,” Sergeant Jim Collins told the court.

“There was a bit of an exchange and he took off spinning the wheels. Gardaí had to move out of the way. He was subsequently stopped again and charged.”

Solicitor for Peoples, Mr Michael Shiel, said his client did not realise the speed at which he was travelling.

“The Gardaí said they would take the vehicle off him and that’s why he drove off,” Mr Shiel said. “He is a farmer and he was very uneasy that they would take the vehicle. He relies on the vehicle for work as he has land in a lot of different places. He drives a lorry for a living and he has his hands up here on the first occasion.”

Judge Paul Kelly told Peoples that it was ‘entirely inappropriate’ to behave in that manner. “If you drove in that manner, Gardaí have the powers to seize the vehicle, whether you agree with that or not,” Judge Kelly said.

Judge Kelly reduced the charge to one of careless driving, fined Peoples €500 and gave him six months in which to pay.


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