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Court chaos in Wexford with three defendants with same name on one day

CourtsBy Sunday World
Court chaos in Wexford with three defendants with same name on one day

There was confusion in Gorey District Court as three defendants, all with the same name, were on the list of summonses being dealt with by Judge Gerard Haughton.

One of three men called Michael Connors responded when the case of another Michael Connors was called and left the courthouse believing that he had been convicted and fined.

A second Michael Connors had a solicitor in court and ready to defend his interests while the third Michael Connors did not attend the sitting which took place on January 14.

Case number 12 on the list was a speeding summons against Michael Connors whose address was given on the list as Enniscorthy Road, Clonroche.

It was alleged by Garda Martin Kavanagh that this individual hit 63 km/h in the 50 km/h zone in Clonroche on a date in March of last year.

A defendant who said he was Michael Connors was present to tell the judge that he had not paid the postal fine as he had changed address. A fine of €150 was recorded.

Some time later, the court clerk called the case number 57 against Michael Connors, whose address was given on the official paperwork at Carrigduff in Bunclody.

The case was brought by Garda Cathal Burke who investigated a breach of the 50 km/h limit in Bunclody which occurred on May 23.

The court clerk alerted the judge to the fact that Michael Connors from Carrigduff appeared to have taken the rap for Michael Connors from Clonroche.

Also on the list (at case number 73) was a summons against Michael Connors, this one with an address at 1 Ryland Wood in Bunclody, represented by solicitor David Tarrant.

At this stage it emerged that the Michael Connors who responded to the first case was not the correct bearer of that name.

Judge Gerard Haughton decided to re-open case number 12, with Garda Martin Kavanagh formally giving his evidence of the offence which occurred in Clonroche.

This time the correct defendant was primed and ready to give his defence, with sworn evidence that he had moved from Clonroche to Castlemoyle in New Ross.

The judge dismissed the case, prompting laughter in court when he remarked: "If we mix them up, maybe the postman does as well."

It turned out that the Michael Connors who responded when case number 12 was first dealt with was the Michael Connors listed at case number 57, from Carrigduff.

He was no longer in court when the court was ready to consider the matter, an allegation of speeding near his home in Bunclody.

Proceedings in case number 73, against Michael Connors from Ryland Wood stand adjourned to March 10.

Via Wexford People