By Court Reporter firstname.lastname@example.org@dundalkdemocrat
A 46 year old man who was arrested by the PSNI after he drove dangerously dangerously on the M1 motorway in Louth and escaped into the North while being pursued by gardai, has been given suspended sentences at Dundalk District Court.
Paul Finglas who previously lived in Drogheda but has an address at Orior Park, Bessbrook, County Armagh also admitted driving without insurance on April 26th last year.
The court heard Gardaí came upon the defendant driving at 165 kilometres on the M1.
They followed and he exited at the Charleville junction and without stopping for traffic on the roundabout, undertook a vehicle and drove back on to the northbound carriage of the motorway.
The Mercedes undertook a number of other vehicles, passing them out on the hard shoulder and continued northbound, driving dangerously while the volume of traffic was heavy.
He undertook other motorists at Feede and crossed into Northern Ireland, where the PSNI stopped him in relation to offences in the North.
Paul Finglas was banned from driving at the time and could not have been insured.
The court heard he had 50 previous convictions.
A letter from his employer was handed into court and the Defence solicitor stressed that no damage was done.
He added that it's over five years since his client's last conviction and as set out in the letter he said the accused clearly had a very difficult life, but he is now engaged to be married and is very sorry for what he did.
Paul Finglas told the court the gets the bus to work in Newry and is off drink for a year, and is drug-free.
Judge Flann Brennan told him "I can't ignore your awful record" but he said he was impressed by the faith his employer has in him and the guilty pleas entered saying "You haven't tried to dodge this in any way".
He imposed three month suspended sentences and a three year driving ban and told him "I'll say to you what I've probably said to you many times before - if you drink you'll get into trouble, if you don't you won't".