Taxi driver ‘refused to take Maia Dunphy as she had a buggy’

Court hears that the driver was ‘lazy’ and ‘unwilling to get wet’ in 2017 incident

A Dublin taxi driver has been described in court as lazy and unwilling to get wet after he refused to take TV presenter Maia Dunphy and her toddler in his car because she had a buggy.

Ms Dunphy (41) and her toddler had been caught in rain when she tried to hail Anthony Fannin’s taxi at a rank at St Stephen’s Green in Dublin on February 23rd last year.

However, Dublin District Court heard that Fannin, from Cappagh Road, Finglas, Co Dublin, told her the buggy would not fit into the boot of his Toyota Avensis saloon.

The case went to a full court hearing on Monday after Fannin refused to accept an €80 fixed penalty notice over the incident.


He was prosecuted by the National Transport Authority (NTA) on a charge of refusing to carry a passenger, something which can result in a maximum fine of €2,500. He pleaded not guilty to the charge.

Ms Dunphy told the court she had become angry and reported Fannin to the NTA.

She said that during the incident she had gestured toward his boot but he didn’t get out of his car. The court heard she left saying “don’t bother” after he refused her and recommended another taxi with more room.

The court heard an NTA official met Ms Dunphy and carried out a test to prove her foldable buggy would have fit in the boot of an Avensis and that there was “ample room”. Photos of this demonstration were handed in to the judge.

Guilty verdict

Judge John Brennan found Fannin guilty but noted he was a man of mature years and had no prior convictions.

The judge said he was satisfied that the case involved “a lazy driver unwilling to get wet to and not willing to provide a service he was obliged to provide”.

He told the taxi driver that if he donated €250 to the Irish Down Syndrome Sporting Organisation and paid €150 towards prosecution costs the case would be struck out, meaning he would be spared a recorded criminal conviction.

Adjourning the case until May, the judge warned Fannin that otherwise he would face a conviction and a €500 fine, along with an order to pay €400 towards the NTA’s legal costs.