Charges laid against a Tors Cove mechanic in connection with unlawful school bus inspection certificates have been dropped.
The Crown withdrew seven Highway Traffic Act charges against Randall O’Reilly, owner and operator of O’Reilly’s Service Station, for causing a vehicle inspection certificate to be displayed without a proper inspection being carried out. The charges were dropped because of an unlikely prospect of conviction, the court heard.
Judge dismisses application for acquittal in N.L. unlawful school bus certificate case
Last month, a provincial court judge turned down an application for an acquittal from O’Reilly’s lawyer, Jon Noonan, who argued the essential elements of the offences had not been proven by the Crown. Judge Mike Madden dismissed that application, saying although some aspects of the Crown’s case were circumstantial, he couldn’t say there was no evidence at all that might support a guilty verdict if it were believed.
Madden said there was some evidence to suggest the school bus inspection certificates in question had been “carelessly and directly fabricated,” but noted his concerns with whether or not prosecutor Scott Hurley had presented enough evidence to say O’Reilly had been the one to complete them.
O’Reilly had been charged in the fall of 2017 after an investigation by Service Newfoundland and Labrador’s Highway Enforcement branch turned up issues with seven school buses owned by Executive Taxi, which was also charged.