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Jail sentence for 19-year-old caught driving with no insurance five times in two months

Defendant to appeal sentence handed down for litany of offences in 'lamentable case'

Armagh Courthouse

An Armagh teenager with a litany of driving offences has been sentenced to four months in prison.

The deputy district judge told the 19-year-old: “I am faced with how to protect the road users of this district and instil in your mind how serious this is.”

Ernestas Skarnulis, of Willowbank, pleaded guilty to five counts of driving with no insurance, one of driving without a licence and two counts of driving whilst disqualified at the city’s Magistrates’ Court on Tuesday.

Cour heard these detections were made on December 11, December 17, December 22, December 26 and February 10.

Deputy District Judge Peter King commented that the defendant had not attended with probation despite being given two chances.

Defence barrister Scott McWhinney stated: “This is a young man who has forgotten very important appointments, he has been in this country for 16 years.

“Given his pattern of offending, he quite unusually works as a mechanic. The best instructions he has given to me is that it was through stupidity.”

He continued: “I have told him your worship is minded to give him a custodial sentence today. He has realised that this has caught up with him.

“This is a lamentable case in which he finds himself before the court with a litany of charges against him.”

Deputy District Judge King stated: “I have an obligation to give sentences which rehabilitate the defendant but I am also obligated to protect the public.

“I am faced with how to protect the road users of this district and instil in your mind how serious this is.”

Skarnulis was sentenced to four months in prison and ordered to pay a fine of £500.

In addition, he was disqualified from driving for three years.

Mr McWhinney made it known that the defendant wished to appeal the sentence.

Skarnulis was released pending his appeal.

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