Serial offender banned until 2032

BANNED from driving until 2032, and with a lengthening criminal record, East Lismore man Troy Maher was told by a magistrate that being young with drug and alcohol problems was not considered to be ‘special circumstances’ for a reduced sentence.

Maher, 22, who has never held a licence, will be 44 when he becomes eligible to apply to drive legally.

He pleaded guilty in the Lismore Local Court last week to being in possession of goods suspected of being stolen near Byron Bay at 3.50am on March 15, larceny at a residential unit in Suffolk Park; and trespassing at the unit on Broken Head Road.

Police facts stated that Maher had an extensive criminal history and was on parole from jail at the time of his latest offences.

A bystander confronted Maher after seeing him attempting to break into motor vehicles parked along Broken Head Road.

Police officers conducted a foot patrol and saw Maher in the rear yard of a residential complex before he ran off.

Arrested minutes later on a balcony, police found a set of motor vehicle keys on Maher, which were identified by a resident of the unit as belonging to his Jeep.

A woman also told police the front door of her car was open and someone had searched the glove box. Maher was also found with a telephone sim card that had not been activated.

Additionally, Maher pleaded guilty to high-range drink-driving (0.170) at 1.45am in Lismore on March 5; and driving when disqualified. At the time he had been disqualified until 2029.

With pages of his prior police matters before the court, Magistrate Robyn Denes noted there were five drive when disqualified offences on his record and a previous DUI charge.

Defence lawyer Kylie Anderson-Clarke said her client was in ‘a very sad situation’ because he was still so young to have such a long police record.

Ms Anderson-Clarke said although Maher had been given chances before by the court it would be preferable if he received a longer term of supervised parole and less time in jail.

Ms Denes convicted Maher and sentenced him to serve 18 months’ jail, setting a 12-month non-parole period. He was disqualified from driving for another three years – until 2032.

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