A man who travelled along the N4 outside Mullingar at 209 kilometres an hour has been jailed for six months at Mullingar District Court for dangerous driving.
Traffic Garda Gareth O’Brien told the court how he lay in wait on an off-ramp for the car on July 17 following a report from a member of the public and he reached speeds of over 200km per hour on his motorbike as he sought to catch the BMW.
Driver Jamie Murray of 16 Ard na Mara, Kilcoole, Co Wicklow, who was overtaking traffic on the hard shoulder has 55 previous convictions including at least three for driving without insurance.
He has been disqualified a number of times by various courts.
Garda O’Brien said traffic had been heavy on the Sunday evening and when stopped after three or four kilometres, Murray was quite frank and admitted he had no licence or insurance.
The 19-year-old father of one said he was in a hurry home because his child had been taken ill and was driving for the car owner who was drunk.
Judge Seamus Hughes said Murray put his own life and the lives of the garda and other road users in danger and disqualified him from driving for 25 years.
If he could jail him for two years he would, he said, but imposed the maximum six month sentence.
Murray initially requested that his case be adjourned and he be remanded on bail, but Judge Hughes refused and proposed remanding him in custody with consent to bail.
“Every day people are killed on our roads,” he said after hearing during a legal aid application that Murray’s previous convictions would see him at serious risk of going to jail.
Jail was the judge’s ultimate decision after he noted Murray had shown blatant disregard for court orders and was a danger to the public.
He said a six month maximum prison sentence is “totally inadequate” for someone like Murray who has “a plethora” of road traffic convictions.
“At least 12 months should apply,” he said, to offences like driving at 209kmh whilst disqualified, in a high powered car.