A man charged with speeding on the N81 has told a Kildare District Court that the State’s speed monitoring system is a “racket”.
Peter Coleman, with an address at Forget Me Not, Apartment 4, Allen Hall, Belgard Square, Tallaght, appeared at the July 26 sitting of Naas District Court.
Garda Inspector Patsy Glennon said that Gardai had recorded Mr Coleman driving at a speed of 78kph in a 60kph zone at Horsepasstown, Ballymore Eustace.
Mr Coleman complained about being fined at going at 47 miles per hour, which is more or less equivalent to 78 kilometres per hour, on this road. “I feel very badly treated. I was driving at 47 miles an hour,” he said. “I feel very aggrieved. I feel I have to make a stand.”
Mr Coleman said he wanted to see the contracts between himself and the State. “ I got no answer to the letter I sent in,” he said.
Mr Coleman continued: “The State is running a little racket,” he said of the speeding system.
Mr Coleman accepted he was travelling at78 kph in the 60kph zone. “I did not see a sign,” he said. Garda Inspector Patsy Glennon said there was a sign. Mr Coleman said many roads have different speeds on different part of the road.
Some are notorious speed traps and are “wasting people’s time and Garda time”, according to the defendant.
Inspector Glennon said four people have been killed in the last ten years on the stretch Mr Coleman was caught, on so the speed limit was brought down.
Judge Desmond Zaidan said that in fairness to Mr Coleman, he had strong views and they were in conflict with Inspector’s Glennon’s.
Judge Zaidan repeated the the Inspector’s statement that four people had been killed on the stretch over the last ten years. It is “not true” that the speed detection systems is a racket, said the judge.
The judge went onto say that he did not think there was a speed system anywhere so transparent as the one in Ireland.
He said that nowhere do road authorities tell drivers that there is a speed camera up ahead the way we do in Ireland. “In Ireland you can see where the cameras are on the website.”
Judge Zaidan said he had many criticisms of the system, including that the same penalties were levies on slower drivers than faster drivers who broke the legal limits.
He told Mr Coleman: “There is no substantial basis for your view.”
He advised him to go to members of the Oireachtas to get the law changed. “They make the laws. I do my best to balance the application of the law.”
Mr Coleman said: “You haven’t told me anything I don’t know.”
Judge Zaidan said: “I would not subscribe to your views.”
The judge said he could fine him up to €2,000 but he fined him €200.