Lyndon v District Judge Collins

JurisdictionIreland
JudgeMr. Justice Peter Charleton
Judgment Date22 January 2007
Neutral Citation[2007] IEHC 487
CourtHigh Court
Date22 January 2007
Lyndon v District Judge Collins
JOHN LYNDON
APPLICANT

AND

DISTRICT JUDGE MARY COLLINS
RESPONDENT

AND

THE DIRECTOR OF PUBLIC PROSECUTIONS
NOTICE PARTY

[2007] IEHC 487

Record number: 783 JR/2006

THE HIGH COURT

Abstract:

Practice and procedure - Road Traffic Offence - Criminal law - Judicial review - Right to fair trial - District Court - Whether District judge required to give reasons - Whether applicant in charge of vehicle - Whether applicant received fair trial.

Facts The applicant had been found by a Garda in a car and owing to his intoxication had been charged under the Road Traffic Acts. There were issues regarding the applicant's intent to drive as it was suggested that the applicant intended to sleep overnight in his car and drive the following morning and furthermore that he had no intention of driving when he was arrested. In the District Court the District judge rejected the defence case and was satisfied that the prosecution had made out its case. The applicant initiated judicial review proceedings claiming that there had been a failure to give proper reasons.

Held by Mr. Justice Charleton in refusing the relief sought. As a matter of law judicial bodies were required to give reasons for their decisions. It was clear that the defence case had been rejected in its entirety and that the evidence given on behalf of the prosecution by the prosecuting Garda was accepted by the learned judge. Although the reasoning was short, that there was reasoning and the reasoning was to the effect that the judge did not accept the case made by the defence. Even if there had been a defect a rehearing under the statutory scheme in the Circuit Court would meet every alleged defect.

Reporter: R.F.

INTERNATIONAL FISHING VESSELS LTD v MIN FOR MARINE 1989 IR 149 1988/8/2385

MULHOLLAND & KINSELLA v BORD PLEANALA (NO 2) 2006 1 IR 453 2006 1 ILRM 287 2005/40/8371 2005 IEHC 306

O'MAHONY v JUDGE BALLAGH 2002 2 IR 410 2001/19/5350

ABENGLEN PROPERTIES LTD, STATE v DUBLIN CORP 1984 IR 381 1982 ILRM 590 1982/1/1

STEFAN v MIN FOR JUSTICE & REFUGEE APPEALS AUTHORITY 2001 4 IR 203 2002 2 ILRM 134 2001/23/6290

1

1. I must say the first thing that struck me in relation to this case is that the applicant gave a very full affidavit detailing literally all the circumstances both positive and negative for him and against him in bringing this application for a judicial review, which has led the Court to a position where it does not need to make findings of fact. All the facts are set out, and indeed the replying affidavit is proof is of that because it is very short and to the point. I am grateful to the parties for their submissions, and in particular to the applicant for the written submissions, which are very helpful.

2

2. The case hinges around the issue as to what reasons, if any, need to be given by a district judge in relation to a decision that he or she might make, and secondly, in the event that that goes against the State party represented, the respondent, whether judicial review ought to be granted in the circumstances.

3

3. As Mr. McCarthy helpfully pointed out to me in relation to the European case law in this matter, all of these matters have to centre on the individual facts in cases as they are presented in court. This case concerns an incident on 6th December 2004 when the applicant was in Marlborough Street in a car in circumstances where the prosecuting Garda later in the District Court said that he was obviously intoxicated, and I do not think there is any dispute about that fact. The dispute is was he in charge of the car, or was he using it in effect as a bed? Was he intending to drive then, or was he intending to drive the following morning? In any event, the reality is that he was arrested and the matter came on for hearing before Judge Mary Collins, who is the respondent in this case.

4

4. A number of points...

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  • Ayadi v DPP
    • Ireland
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    • 20 January 2017
    ...that the appeal must be allowed and the matter remitted to the District Court for rehearing.' 10 In Lyndon District Judge Mary Collins [2007] IEHC 487, the applicant was in a car in circumstances where it was obvious to the Garda who saw him that he was intoxicated. Three submissions were ......
  • Sisk v District Judge O'Neill
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    ...English v Emery Reimbold & Strick Ltd [2002] 1 WLR 2409; Kenny v Coughlan [2008] IEHC 28 (Unrep, O'Neill J, 8/2/2008); Lyndon v Collins [2007] IEHC 487 (Unrep, Charleton J, 22/1/2007) and R v Galbraith (1981) 73 Crim App Rep 124 considered - Road Traffic Act 1994 (No 7), s 13 - Relief refus......
  • Walsh v Walsh
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    • 2 February 2017
    ...be expressly stated (see O'Mahony v Ballagh [2002] 2 I.R. 410), in other cases they may be implicit. The decision of Charleton J. in Lyndon v. Collins [2007] IEHC 487 (Unreported, High Court, 21st January, 2007) (cited in Foley v. Murphy [2007] IEHC 232 [2008] 1 I.R. 619) is illustrativ......
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