Ireland: More than 100 disqualified drivers charged in six weeks under new powers

Published Thu, 06/08/2015 - 12:39

  • 87 disqualified drivers arrested and charged since 22 June, plus a further 30 drivers charged with multiple offences
  • Prison sentences imposed on 4 disqualified drivers
  • 3 other disqualified drivers convicted to date 
  • Gardaí charge on average 3 disqualified drivers per day

 

On 22 June 2015, police officers in Ireland were given new powers to arrest disqualified drivers on the spot if found driving any vehicle in a public place.This new power enables officers (Gardaí) around the country immediately to arrest these high risk offenders, convey them to the nearest Garda station, charge them with the specific offence of driving whilst disqualified and bring them to the earliest available court sitting.  

87 disqualified drivers have been intercepted, arrested and charged under these new powers. In a further 30 incidents, other offences were detected, such as driving whilst intoxicated, unauthorised taking of an MPV, dangerous driving, defective vehicles, no NCT,  giving false names or address, which also resulted in arrests and charges for multiple offences, including driving whilst disqualified. 

Many vehicles have also been seized and impounded as they were uninsured.

Of the total number of 117 disqualified drivers charged and brought before the courts, seven have been convicted and have received various penalties ranging from community service, additional disqualifications, fines, and in some instances prison sentences. The remainder are still before the courts.

Prison sentences of between three and four months have been imposed in four cases.  

Chief Superintendent Mark Curran, Garda National Traffic Bureau said:- "It is totally unacceptable that drivers who have lost their licence either through the accumulation of penalty points or in court continue to drive. Since this new law to arrest disqualified drivers on the spot came into operation on the 22nd June, our members have been working hard to ensure these disqualified drivers are intercepted and removed from the roads. One Dublin Traffic Corps member has arrested two disqualified drivers. In many cases, when intercepted, other offences have been detected such as no insurance or intoxicated driving. ”