Woman blamed Lithuanian partner for Moy motoring offences

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A drunk passenger who made off without paying for a tank of fuel has been warned to take responsibility for her behaviour.

Claire McGrath, 26, from Fifth Avenue, Newry, appeared at Dungannon Court on Wednesday.

The defendant was arrested by police after they identified her from footage at Eurospar, Moy, which showed her filling a tank with £43 worth of fuel on December 17.

The court heard how when she admitted the offence to police, she said she was drunk and blamed the driver for telling her to do it.

It also emerged that McGrath was the owner of the vehicle at the time. She was charged for permitting a car to be driven without a driving licence and no insurance.

Her defence solicitor said that McGrath had made a full admission of the offence. He said that her mitigation was her problems with alcohol.

“She had a difficult background growing up with both her parents abusing alcohol and her father dying of alcohol abuse. She also suffered a serious assault at the age of 15. She recently entered a relationship with an older man from Lithuania, and without this association she would not have been back in court.”

However, Judge Meehan warned the defendant that she had to take responsibility for her own behaviour. He also noted that she had been in breach of three community service orders. He adjourned the case for a week to ascertain when McGrath was beginning a residential course to treat her alcohol abuse.