A man who was caught by police driving with a fraudulent Romanian licence which he paid £200 for has been handed a nine month disqualification.
The 24-year-old’s solicitor told court: “The defendant had paid for lessons in Romania and at the end of that was provided with this licence. This is similar to cases which were arising with persons from Lithuania prior.”
Adrian Gheorghe, of Edenderry Park in Banbridge, pleaded guilty to using a vehicle without insurance, no driving licence, making a a false declaration to obtain insurance and possession of a false driving document at Newry Magistrates’ on Wednesday, via videolink from his solicitor’s office.
Prosecution outlined that on August 3, at 4.15pm, police stopped this defendant driving a Volkswagen Passat at Edenderry Park, Banbridge.
Gheorghe, after telling officers he did not have his licence, was escorted to his home address to produce it.
Upon inspection of the document, police believed it to be fraudulent with further checks revealing he did not have valid insurance.
The defendant was arrested and conveyed to Lurgan Custody Suite. When interviewed Gheorghe claimed he had purchased the licence from another male in Romania and admitted to having never sat a test.
He went on to say that he had paid another male to obtain his insurance for him.
Defence solicitor Ruairi Gillen stated: “The defendant has paid for lessons in Romania and at the end of that was provided with this licence. This is similar to cases which were arising with persons from Lithuania prior.
“He had also paid for another male to get him insured here as he does not have English. He had been paying for it but it was invalid due to the false licence.”
Deputy District Judge Peter Prenter commented: “He should have known from March ’19. He has a conviction for no insurance then and he is lucky he is not charged with driving whilst disqualified.
“It is clear that he knew he had no licence or insurance.”
The defendant was handed a conditional discharge for two years, he was disqualified from driving for nine months and was ordered to pay a fine of £400, along with the offender’s levy of £15, within 20 weeks.