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Banned and uninsured driver told if long prison sentence ‘does not do anything, nothing will’

Defence described his client - who is a serving prisoner - as 'a man with an unenviable record'

Armagh Magistrates Court

A man with “an unenviable record” has been told by a district judge if a long prison sentence “does not do anything, nothing will”.

The 23-year-old’s solicitor told court that the defendant was a sentence prisoner not due for release until April next year.

Ryan Cassidy, whose address was given as HMP Maghaberry, pleaded guilty to using a vehicle without insurance and driving whilst disqualified at Armagh Magistrates’, appearing via videolink from the prison.

Defence solicitor Jarlath Fields informed the court that his client was a sentence prisoner, who was not due for release until next April.

Prosecution outlined that on September 25, police on patrol of Armagh observed a BMW being driven on Lonsdale Road, and checks revealed the car to be uninsured.

Officers approached the car which was located parked in the Southern Regional College car park on Lisanally Lane.

They spoke to Cassidy, who was in the driver seat of the car, and a licence check revealed that he was a disqualified driver.

The defendant was arrested for the offences before the court. During interview he claimed he had not been driving and had walked to meet a friend, who owned the car.

Mr Fields stated: “This is a man with an unenviable record. He has been in custody since April of last year and has since been sentenced for a number of matters which has left him with a release date of next April.

“I would ask that your worship does not interfere with this release date in your sentencing.”

District Judge Peter Magill said: “I don’t see any point in adding to that sentence, Mr Cassidy, you pleaded guilty and you are entitled to credit for that.

“You are in for a very long sentence and if that does not do anything, nothing will.”

Cassidy was sentenced to four months in prison and was disqualified from driving for four years.

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