Test drive motorist banned for six months

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A 63-year-old who was caught by police test driving a car with a view to purchasing it for his brother, has lost his licence for six months.

Thomas Patrick Maguire, of Hillhead Road, Castledawson, was also fined a total of £465 for having no insurance and obstructing police.

Magherafelt Magistrates Court heard police stopped the defendant in the vehicle at Hillhead Road on September 11 last, and checks showed he was not covered by insurance.

She said the defendant insisted he was insured and the policy was at a nearby property, but when police called at the address it was found he did not live there.

A defence lawyer claimed Maguire had panicked when stopped by the police and gave officers false details.

He explained that he had been test driving the vehicle with a view to purchasing it for his brother.

Continuing, he stressed it had been five years since the defendant had last appeared before the court for a motoring offence.

The lawyer said Maguire was making an effort to try and get insurance.

Imposing the penalties, District Judge Oonagh Mullan said Maguire had a “considerable record.”

Ms Mullan said he had a total of 166 previous convictions most of which she described as “historical.”

She told the defendant he should have checked whether he was insured before getting into the vehicle, but she would not impose a lengthy period of disqualification on this occasion.