Woman presented fake medical certs to court

Karen Nixon at the district court in Bandon, Co Cork. Picture Dan Linehan

A 40-year-old woman who presented a number of faked medical certs in a court hearing has been advised to produce a minimum of €5,000 to avoid a significant jail sentence.

The false certificates had been used by Karen Nixon, pictured right, to seek adjournments for charges relating to driving while disqualified offences between 2013-2015.

The certificates indicated that Ms Nixon, from Forest Rest, Kilbrittain, Co Cork, had been suffering from cancer, had bone marrow transplant and was receiving chemotherapy. However, the claims were not true.

Judge James McNulty, at Bandon District Court yesterday, said she had “some neck to seek sympathy and indulgence on false premises that would tick the boxes of a lot of judges”.

Her solicitor, Plunkett Taaffe, was asked by the judge if Ms Nixon was offering any proposal to make amends for her offences.

Mr Taaffe said her difficulties had stemmed from marital disharmony and she had been left without any supports which caused a litany of problems which led to her offending. The solicitor said it was an unfortunate case but the judge disagreed and said Ms Nixon was a persistent offender.

The judge said the courts take a serious view of the offences and furthermore Ms Nixon had also misled a person who compiled a probation report for the courts.

Judge McNulty asked: “Is there any realisation or any acceptance, for a moment, that someone should make amends?”

Mr Taaffe said Ms Nixon, with the exception of a brother who backed her, was not able to get any family support and, financially, did not have access to funds.

The judge, stating that a substantial fine would have to be paid for Ms Nixon to escape the indignity, for herself, her children, and her family of serving a significant prison sentence.

He advised her to ask her family for support or to borrow money. The matter was adjourned to May 3.

Meanwhile, in a separate matter, Ms Nixon is to face trial on November 7 in relation to 10 charges of fraud in that she dishonestly induced sums of money from a third party in 2013/2014. She is pleading not guilty.

Her solicitor, Fergus Applebe, said an issue had occurred in the courts previously where a plea of guilty had been entered in error by another solicitor. The case is being contested.

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