Judge questions police case against a Magherafelt woman accused of deceit

Magherafelt Court House
Magherafelt Court House

A 55-year-old Magherafelt woman has had a charge of ‘deceiving police’ dropped after the judge presiding over Magherafelt Magistrates Court questioned the case against her.

Rachel Mawhinney of Leckagh Drive in the town was accused of driving without insurance on September 6 last year and subsequently using a certificate of insurance in a fraudulent way on September 12.

She pleaded guilty to having no insurance, but not guilty of ‘intent to deceive’ on Wednesday, April 15.

Questioning the charges, Judge White said: “How can she be guilty of attempting to deceive (police) if she hands it (her insurance certificate) over and then tells them it’s been cancelled? She did say in interview.”

Passing sentence, Judge White said he would have no choice but to disqualify Mawhinney from driving for six months for the upheld charge, as she already had six points on her licence.

But, “to reflect the fact that you thought you had paid insurance” he passed just a £10 fine with a £15 offenders levy, giving her four weeks to pay.