Killarney taxi driver ‘deeply ashamed’ of accusing another motorist of colliding with tragic cyclist

A Bangladeshi taxi driver who wrongly accused another motorist of colliding with and then rolling over a cyclist later changed his statement, Tralee Circuit Criminal Court has heard. 38-year-old Rabiul Alam of Arlington Heights, Killarney, pleaded guilty to attempting to pervert the course of justice at Knopogue, Aghadoe, on August 26th, 2011. The collision claimed the life of 19-year-old student Shane Courtney. Married father-of-three, Rabiul Alam was ‘deeply ashamed’ of his actions and made two efforts to contact Killarney Garda Station by telephone to amend his statement, Tralee Circuit Criminal Court heard. Tralee courthouse2 One week later, he handed in a prepared statement at the garda station that indicated his was the first vehicle to strike Shane Courtney. Members of the Courtney family, including Shane’s parents, were in court for the sentence hearing. Mr Alam’s barrister, Anthony Sammon, said his client’s mind had not been entirely and correctly focussed and he had come up with a ‘cock and bull story’ that he later sought to amend. He said it was reprehensible to suggest some other innocent person was at fault and he was deeply ashamed he had acted like that. Judge Thomas E. O’Donnell expressed his condolences with the Courtney family, whom he said were still grieving over four years later. However, he added it was a very serious matter and he didn’t wish to rush to judgement. He remanded Mr Alam on continuing bail to the June 15th sitting of the court for sentencing.