A 39-year-old former truck driver from County Galway has been told that he will be sent to jail unless he starts telling the truth about making 580 malicious phone calls to a husband and wife. Noel Winters of Kylebeg, Killimor admitted harassing Brendan and Síle Hoary of Ballycrossaun in Ballinasloe. Winters, who appeared at Portumna District Court, made the calls on a mobile phone during a four-month period in the summer and autumn of 1988.

Solicitor for Noel Winters, Frank Kennedy, said he now accepted that it was an appalling offence and he was deeply ashamed of his behaviour. A previous hearing of the court was told that 56 of the 580 calls were made during one 12-hour period. Winters' solicitor pleaded with Judge James O'Sullivan not to impose a jail sentence. He said he was now undergoing continuous psychological assessment.

Judge O'Sullivan said Winters had made innumerable disturbing phone calls to a good, decent, Christian couple, cruelly disturbing their lives. He said Winters still appeared to be denying some other matters and he would certainly impose a jail sentence on him at the December court, unless his statements to the Probation Officers contained more truthful evidence.