Postman’s driving ban was meant for son of same name, court hears

Judge says failure to deal with issue in common-sense way has resulted in ‘utter waste of time’

A postman who went to renew his driving licence found a seven-year driving ban had been applied in error against him when it should have been against his 40-year-old son of the same name, the High Court has heard.

Brendan Gannon senior (63) of Galtymore Road, Drimnagh, Dublin, was told by the National Driving Licence Service (NDLS) when he went to renew his licence last January that he was disqualified from driving until 2025.

It transpired that his son Brendan Gannon junior was actually the person who had been banned for seven years at Tallaght District Court in December 2018 for driving without insurance or a licence, the court heard.

Mr Gannon senior has been given permission to bring a challenge against the Road Safety Authority, which operates the NDLS, the Garda Commissioner and the Courts Service, to have the error rectified.

He claims that despite representations by him and his solicitors, the Courts Service has told the NDLS that Mr Gannon senior’s licence number was given in Tallaght Court in 2018 and it is now “a Garda matter” in relation to the giving of incorrect information.

The Courts Service also said it cannot amend the disqualification order unless ordered to do so by a judge. As a result, the NDLS added, Mr Gannon senior is disqualified until 2025.

On May 7th, his solicitor asked the officer who prosecuted the case against the son to investigate the matter but no response was received.

Mr Gannon’s application for leave to challenge the decision first came before Mr Justice Charles Meenan on Wednesday when the judge commented that it seemed “quite an astonishing situation” and an “utter waste of time” that the matter could not be dealt with in a common-sense way.

On Thursday, the judge was told by barrister David Staunton, for Mr Gannon, there had been no response from the respondents to a notification about the pending proceedings.

The judge granted Mr Staunton leave to bring the challenge and imposed a stay on the driving ban until the case returns on Friday.