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Irish Student Hacks Off Car Clamp To Avoid Being 'Stuck In Dublin'

Irish Student Hacks Off Car Clamp To Avoid Being 'Stuck In Dublin'

"He was anxious to get home and not be stuck in Dublin,"

This was the defence of 25 year old music student Gabriel McCallion's decision to saw a car clamp from his vehicle rather than pay the €80 release fee.

According to the Independent.ie, Mr McCallion, from Ballynease Road, Bellaghy, Co Derry, pleaded guilty to causing criminal damage to the clamp, which belonged to Dublin City Council at Jones's Road, Drumcondra.

McCallion, who was visiting Dublin to attend a photography course, was arrested at 5.15pm when officers saw the accused cutting the clamp from the wheel of his car. When confronted Mr. McCallion admitted the crime and was arrested and taken to Mountjoy Garda station.

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Defence solicitor Tony Collier said that "the clamp would have cost €80 to have removed by the clampers, but he only had €40 on him, €20 of which he spent in a hardware shop on a hacksaw".

Judge Anthony Halpin applied the Probation Act, leaving McCallion without a conviction after he paid €200 compensation for the damage. Mr. McCallion had no previous convictions.

Mr. McCallion's car has since been clamped again meaning that he will have to pay the €80 release fee on top of the €200 compensation for the damaged clamp. And of course we have to factor in the €20 euro McCallion forked out for the hacksaw. So all in all the incident has potentially cost Mr. McCallion €300 euro.

Judge Halpin remarked that he did not think Dublin City Council could re-clamp a car. There was "no legislation" to allow this.

Eoin Lyons

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