Driver found crash ‘amusing’, court told

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After he hit a wheelie bin and crashed into a gatepost a 44-year- old man found the collision amusing, Craigavon Magistrates Court heard last Wednesday.

Zeng-Tong Chen, Castle Rise, Tandragee, was fined £250 for driving without duecare and attention on September 1 this year, banned for 12 months and ordered to pay a £15 offender’s levy.

For not having insurance he was sentenced to four months in prison, suspended for two years, and disqualified for 12 months.

He was also fined £100 for not having a driving licence.

The court heard that at 3.40pm the defendant was driving on the Drumnacanvy Road, Portadown, when he lost control of his car on a right hand bend.

He skidded and hit a wheelie bin before crashing into a large brick gatepost.

A man, who was working at the other gatepost, was hit by the wheelie bin on his leg and lower back.

There were severe damage to the front of the vehicle and the air bags had been deployed.

The injured party said he was going to call the police and the defendant said ‘no phone’ and became agitated when the police were called.

When he was spoken to by police Chen admitted he did not have a licence or insurance.

He was arrested and cautioned and taken to Armagh custody suite and he ‘thought the collision was amusing’ and ‘openly displayed amusement’ regarding what happened.

The defendant blamed surface water on the road at the time, saying he braked late on the wet road and skidded into the gatepost.

A barrister representing Chen said he took a chance in full knowledge that he did not have insurance or a licence.

District Judge, Mrs Bernie Kelly, pointed out that this was the defendant’s fifth no insurance offence.

As well as the suspended sentence, fines and bans the judge ordered forfeiture of the car the defendant was driving.