“You’re getting a suspended sentence today. If you see me again, bring your toothbrush.”
That was the warning issued to Athy man Michael Geoghegan from Judge John Lindsay at the sitting last Tuesday, May 28, of Athy District Court.
The defendant, whose address is listed as 59 Coney Park, Coneyboro, Athy faced charges relating to two dates - August 2, 2011 and a few months later on October 13, 2011.
On the August date, he was stopped on the Carlow road, Athy, and faced road traffic charges such as having nor driving licence, insurance, driving while disqualified and with failure to prodce documents.
On the October date he was stopped on Barrow Quay, Athy, and faced the same charges.
Speaking on his behalf, his barriester told the Judge that his client has been through the courts quite a bit in recent times and that he had believed that these matters had been dealt with at a sitting of the court in September 2012.
“And then in April, it all appeared again.”
In any event, his client, he said, was anxious to have all matters dealt with and was pleading guilty.
The defendant has 30 previous convictions, ranging from November 1998 to September 2012.
“These offences all date back to 2011 when he was on methadone, and at the time, he was trying to get more.
“In the meantime, he has completly detoxed and he’s been entirely drug free for almost a year.
“It’s quite and achievement for a man who started taking drugs when he was 15 years old.
He has a really good family support including that of his girlfriend, who is the mother of two children.
“I’ve dealt with him down through the years,” the barrister revealed “and I’m very impressed. And Judge Zaidan has been impressed with the efforts made by him.”
The defendant, the court heard, has a keen interest in dog breeding, especially in terriers. “It’s a good healthy interest, something for him to focus on.
“He’s not only making efforts, he’s succeeding. He’s no longer on the Garda radar.
“And he’s terrified all of his efforts might come undone if he receives a sentence.”
Judge Lindsay disqualified Mr. Geoghedan from driving for a total of 10 years, gave him and a suspended six month sentence.