People (Attorney General) v Blogh

JurisdictionIreland
CourtCourt of Criminal Appeal
Judgment Date01 January 1958
Date01 January 1958

Court of Criminal Appeal.

The People (Attorney General) v. Blogh
THE PEOPLE (at the Suit of the ATTORNEY GENERAL)
and
BARRY BLOGH (1)

Criminal law - Indictment - Count - Dangerous driving - Statement in particulars of offence that accused "drove a vehicle at a speed or in a manner which . . . was dangerous to the public" - Whether count charged accused with two separate offences - Whether count bad for duplicity - Road Traffic Act, 1933 (No. 11 of 1933), s. 51.

Criminal Appeal.

The facts appear sufficiently in the headnote and judgment,post.

B. B., was charged, inter alia, with dangerous driving, contrary to s. 51 of the Road Traffic Act, 1933. The particulars of offence in this count stated that the said B. B., ". . . in a public place . . . drove a vehicle at a speed or in a manner which, having regard to all the circumstances of the case, . . . was dangerous to the public." B. B., was convicted of the offence of dangerous driving. He appealed to the Court of Criminal Appeal on the grounds, inter alia, that the trial Judge misdirected himself in law in refusing to direct the jury that the count referred to two separate offences which would have to be considered separately and distinctly and that the count was bad for duplicity.

Held by the Court of Criminal Appeal that s. 51 of the Road Traffic Act, 1933, creates two separate and distinct offences and as these two offences were charged in the alternative in one count of the indictment, the count was bad for duplicity and the conviction thereon could not stand.

The State (McLoughlin) v. Judge ShannonIR [1948] I. R. 439, followed.

Held also that the plea that a count is bad for duplicity may be taken on appeal notwithstanding that it was not made on arraignment.

Rex v. Molloy 15 C.A.R. 170 and R. v. Wilmot 24 C.A.R. 63 approved.

The Judgment of the Court was delivered by Kingsmill Moore J.

Kingsmill Moore J.:—

The appellant was indicted in the Central Criminal Court, on a first count, for the manslaughter of one Alice Slattery who had been killed when struck by a motor car driven by the appellant, at Lisboney, County Tipperary, on the 29th December, 1954.

On a second count, in respect of his driving of the motor car on the same occasion, he was charged with dangerous driving, contrary to s. 51 of the Road Traffic Act, 1933. The particulars of offence in this count were that:"On the 29th day of December, 1954, in a public place,viz., Lisboney, Nenagh, in the County of Tipperary...

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