Former Clare TD to appeal two-year driving ban

Michael McNamara criticises leak of details of him being pepper-sprayed during arrest

Michael McNamara: he   said a journalist turned up at the door of his home with a list of questions that “could only have come from Garda information”

Michael McNamara: he said a journalist turned up at the door of his home with a list of questions that “could only have come from Garda information”

 

Former Labour Clare TD Michael McNamara confirmed on Thursday he would be appealing his two-year driving ban for dangerous driving.

Mr McNamara (43) can remain on the road pending his appeal hearing at Ennis Circuit Court later this year.

At Ennis District Court on Tuesday, Judge John King convicted Mr McNamara of dangerous driving – it comes with an automatic two-year ban – at Tobernagath, Scarriff, Co Clare, on December 10th, 2016.

Counsel for Mr McNamara, Martin Dully, told the court a driving ban for Mr McNamara “will be exceptionally disastrous for this man”.

Judge King dismissed an accompanying charge against Mr McNamara that he had obstructed a garda in the course of his duties on the same date outside his home. Judge King said it would “unfair and unsafe” to convict Mr McNamara of the obstruction charge.

During the incident, Garda Darren McLoughlin pepper-sprayed Mr McNamara. In evidence, Mr McNamara told the court he was “utterly and completely shocked” when pepper-sprayed. “My eyes were burning out of my head” after being pepper-sprayed shortly after 2.10am on the night.

Front door

Garda McLoughlin said he pepper-sprayed Mr McNamara during his third attempt to evade custody as he tried to open his front door. This was strongly denied by Mr McNamara, who offered a conflicting account of what occurred.

In evidence, Mr McNamara also hit out that details of him being pepper-sprayed made front-page news only days after the incident took place in December 2016. He said that a journalist turned up at the door of his home with a list of questions that “could only have come from Garda information” the Friday after the incident.