Wrong Gheorge: Brother spent week in jail after mix-up

A man spent a week in prison after being arrested because he had the exact same name as his brother.

Gheorge Bot appeared at Letterkenny District Court in Co Donegal charged with a series of driving offences.

However, Mr Bot had the cases against him dismissed after Judge Paul Kelly heard of the mix-up.

To avoid confusion in the case, his own barrister called him Gheorge 1 — saying the alleged offences were committed by his brother, also known as Gheorge 2.

Barrister Kathleen Henry said the man who should be before the court on driving charges is Gheorge Bot of The Willows, Lough Na Glack, Carrickmacross, Co Monaghan. The man she represented — and who was in court — was a different Gheorge Bot of Shercock Rd, Bailieboro, Co Cavan, or Gheorge 2.

Due to confusion in the case, Ms Henry told Judge Paul Kelly, Gheorge Bot 1 had spent a week in Castlerea Prison.

“The two men are brothers and there is a year of difference in age between them,” said the barrister.

“Their father is also called Gheorge and both sons were named in his honour. They even refer to themselves as Gheorge 1 and Gheorge 2.

“Gheorge 2 has gone home to Romania to his father-in-law’s funeral and couldn’t be in court today.”

Mr Bot addressed the court and said it was a custom in his native Romania that a father gave his sons the same name.

Gheorge 2 is now facing charges of careless driving, no road tax, no insurance, no NCT, and no tax in Letterkenny on June 1, 2015.

“So when is Gheorge the Second going to be able to come her to deal with the matter?” asked Judge Kelly.

The barrister asked for a hearing on September 1.

There was laughter in court as Judge Kelly said: “It strikes me that as the father has the same name he was probably Gheorge the First, this man before me is Gheorge the Second and the other Gheorge currently in Romania is Gheorge the Third!”

The case was adjourned until September.


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