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Plasterer who paid man €1,500 to sit driver theory test avoids jail

Florin Onea (38) was one of 21 men who paid this man to sit the driver theory test for them during 2020
Florin Onea took the false test to the NDLS in Santry and used it to apply for a learner permit. Stock image

Florin Onea took the false test to the NDLS in Santry and used it to apply for a learner permit. Stock image

The judge imposed a three-month sentence suspended for 12 months. Stock image

The judge imposed a three-month sentence suspended for 12 months. Stock image© Stock image

Eimear CotterSunday World

A plasterer paid another man €1,500 to sit and pass the driver theory test for him, and then he used the test to apply for a learner’s driving permit, a court heard.

Florin Onea (38) was one of 21 men who paid this man to sit the driver theory test for them during 2020.

Judge David McHugh said Onea’s behaviour was premeditated, and he had a driving licence which otherwise he would not have had and he would not have been on the road. The judge imposed a three-month sentence suspended for 12 months.

The defendant, of Castlefield Court, Clonsilla Road, Dublin 15, admitted he let another man sit his driver theory test and get a fraudulent driver’s learner permit as a result of passing the test on October 6, 2020.

Onea also admitted dishonestly by deception, inducing a worker at the NDLS Centre in Santry on October 20, 2020 to process a driver learner permit application using a theory test result he did not sit, and to using a false instrument at the same time and place.

Sergeant Maria Callaghan told Blanchardstown District Court a garda investigation discovered that one man – not the defendant – had sat the driver theory test 21 times between January and December 2020.

This man passed the test under 21 different names, one of whom was Onea’s, whose test was completed at Redmond Square in Wexford on October 6, 2020.

This man, Sgt Callaghan added, was facing charges before another court.

Sgt Callaghan said Onea then took this false test to the NDLS in Santry and used it to apply for a learner permit.

The court heard Onea had no previous convictions.

Defence solicitor Paddy McGarry said Onea was originally from Romania and had lived in Ireland for five years.

He had worked consistently in construction as a plasterer since he had arrived in Ireland. Mr McGarry said Onea had lived in Italy for a time, and completed a driving test there, but had failed it.

He heard someone could be contacted to sit the theory test for him in Ireland.

Mr McGarry asked the judge to be as lenient as possible, saying Onea had made full admissions when interviewed by gardaí, and he was now working towards sitting the theory test.


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