Kerry judge highlights negative impact of even a single conviction

A Kerry judge has highlighted the negative impact of even a single conviction.

Judge David Waters was speaking at Killarney District Court after a young, local man pleaded guilty to, what Sergeant Kieran O’Connell called, a minor public order offence.

The judge said in recent days the negative impact of previous convictions was in full view; he was referring to Cork man Keith Byrne and his impending deportation from the United States.

Mr Byrne, who’s been in the US for 12 years, was refused a visa – despite being married to an American citizen – due to previous convictions for minor drug possession offences.

Judge Waters said the case highlights how a simple conviction can come back to haunt someone; he subsequently struck out the public order offence, provided the young man makes a contribution to the Garda Benevolent Fund.