Teen accused of telling ‘a pack of lies’ withdraws €60,000 claim

Craig Melia (18) claimed he had to stop gym, sports routines after road traffic accident

Craig Melia  of Swords Manor Court, Swords leaving the Four Courts y after he withdrew his Circuit Civi Court action for damages. Photograph: Collins Courts

Craig Melia of Swords Manor Court, Swords leaving the Four Courts y after he withdrew his Circuit Civi Court action for damages. Photograph: Collins Courts

 

A young footballer has withdrawn a €60,000 personal injury claim linked to a road traffic accident after Instagram photographs of his body building and football training regimes were produced in court.

Barrister Shane English told 18-year-old Craig Melia that the pictures were posted by him after he claimed he had to give up what “meant the world” to him - football and body improvement - after the accident.

Mr English, who appeared with Liz Lyons of Hayes McGrath solicitors, told Mr Melia in the Circuit Civil Court that he had posted before and after pictures lauding how his body had developed from 2016 into 2017.

In the case, Mr Melia, of Swords Manor Court, Swords, said he was helping his father to move furniture in a van on January 1st, 2017 when their vehicle was struck by Mr Fitzgerald’s car.

He said he remembered practically nothing about the accident, which had interfered with and diminished his lifestyle. He said he developed a pain in his neck and upper back about seven hours after the accident and went to his doctor.

Paragliding

Mr English presented pictures of Mr Melia showing off his torso, posing with his father as they prepared to go paragliding in Lanzarote and pictures of him as captain of Swords Celtic soccer team.

The barrister, who represented motorist Joseph Fitzgerald, of Holywell Rise, Swords, and RSA Insurance, told Mr Melia that his father, who also alleged he was injured in the same accident, was taking a High Court claim against the defendants for personal injuries.

Mr Melia told Mr English, when he was shown the photographs, that he had continued training for and playing football and going to the gym after the accident. In his medical report, doctors recalled having been told by Mr Melia that he was unable to get back to playing soccer and attending the gym.

“You have told this court a pack of lies,” Mr English said to Mr Melia. “You deliberately lied to every doctor you met in relation to this case by keeping from them that you had returned to playing football and training, including lifting weights, in the gym.”

Mr English applied to Circuit Court President Mr Justice Raymond Groarke to have the case dismissed on the basis that Mr Melia had misled doctors and the court in his evidence.

Following a lunch-time break, Judge Groarke was told that Mr Melia was withdrawing his claim. Mr English said the defendants were not seeking an order for legal costs against Mr Melia.