POLICE spotted a Skoda Fabia with a defective headlight and when they followed to speak to the driver they noticed an unrestrained “young child” looking in their direction through the rear window at them.
It was 10.20pm on June 26 this year in the Cullybackey Road area in Ballymena town centre, the town’s Magistrates Court heard.
The defendant – Daniel Mosoiu – pleaded guilty to charges of not having a child restrained and having a defective light.
A prosecutor said when the vehicle was stopped by police, officers opened a rear door and saw a small child, aged one or two years old, “seated on the lap of a female”.
She said she was the child’s mother and that the child was unrestrained as “he could not sleep”.
Police spoke to the driver – the defendant (28), a factory worker, with an address listed as Woodland Grove in Ballymena – and he was offered a fixed penalty but he said he could not produce his licence “as it was presently in Romania”.
The prosecutor said the defendant had a record.
Defence solicitor Stewart Ballentine said the defendant had put the child into a car seat “but the child was crying and distressed and that is why the child was on the mother’s lap” but normally the child would be in a car seat.
District Judge Nigel Broderick noted the defendant had a similar driving with an unrestrained child offence before, in 2019, “so it is not as if this is his first time”.
The defendant was given three penalty points and fined £250.