Foul-mouthed speeding cleric to stay on the road

Canon Hanna swore at garda when stopped on way to communion

Canon Hanna (68) successfully applied to appeal his driving ban at Ennis District Court from the same judge who banned him. Photograph: Reuters

Canon Hanna (68) successfully applied to appeal his driving ban at Ennis District Court from the same judge who banned him. Photograph: Reuters

 

Speeding cleric Canon Bob Hanna is to remain on the road despite getting a six-month driving ban 13 days ago.

Canon Hanna (68) successfully applied to appeal his driving ban at Ennis District Court from the same judge who banned him less than two weeks ago.

At the District Court earlier this month, Judge Patrick Durcan banned Canon Hanna from driving after describing his conduct when stopped by gardaí at Bunratty west on April 17th as “despicable” .

Judge Durcan heard that Canon Hanna told Garda Lisa McDonagh that he “did not give a fuck. I’m late”, after being told he was travelling at 135km/h in a 100km/h zone.

Canon Hanna told Garda McDonagh that he was on his way to a communion.

Garda McDonagh said that Canon Hanna snatched his driver’s licence from her, got into his car and repeatedly revved his engine. She said Canon Hanna then said: “I’m leaving, chase me if you want.”

Judge Durcan told the court on December 6th: “Now I know that this man is a minister of religion, I am even more appalled.”

The judge imposed a €500 fine and banned him from driving for six months. Canon Hanna was not in court nor legally represented. However, he was in court yesterday with a solicitor.

In response to an application from Canon Hanna’s solicitor, Judge Durcan extended time to lodge the appeal to December 31st and fixed recognisance at €250. The appeal will be heard at Ennis Circuit Court early in 2015.

After the initial case, Canon Hanna apologised for his outburst. In a statement, the Archbishop’s Commissary of the Diocese of Limerick and Killaloe, Archdeacon Wayne Carney, said: “I have spoken to Canon Hanna, and he deeply regrets using abusive language to the garda who stopped him, and wishes to apologise to her for his behaviour.

“He is also sorry to have missed being present when his case came before the court. As a diocese, we encourage full respect for the Garda Síochána and the laws they enforce and support them in the important role they carry out.”