Councillors in West Dumbartonshire have issued licences to three despite all three having serious criminal convictions.

Sergeant Marie Capaldi, representing the chief constable of Police Scotland at the meeting, objected to the grant of a taxi licence to David Darroch, of Napier Crescent, Brucehill, Dumbarton.

The officer told councillors: “He is not a fit and proper person to hold a licence.”

Councillors were told that Mr Darroch had previous convictions, including assault, breach of the peace and, in July 2016, he was convicted at Dumbarton Sheriff Court of drink driving, when he was more than twice the legal alcohol limit.

Next to appear before the committee was Ryan Martin, of Dunswin Court, Dalmuir, Clydebank, who also faced a quizzing from the committee following observations to his licence application from Police Scotland.

Third up was William Wright, who appeared along with lawyer Eugene Boyle, faced a letter from Police Scotland, highlighting previous prosecutions considered as spent under the Rehabilitation of Offenders’ Act 1974.

Committee chairman Councillor Jim Finn, despite the police objections, moved that Mr Darroch be granted a taxi licence, and it was approved unanimously.

“There was no excuse for what I did,” Wright told the committee.

Again Cllr Finn moved grant and was backed unanimously.

Wright had previous convictions for speeding from 2016 and for cannabis cultivation from 2012, both of which were dealt with at Dumbarton Sheriff Court. He was also convicted of drink driving in 2009.

Mr Boyle explained: “His driving ban was reduced to nine months after he successfully took part in the rehabilitation programme. Notwithstanding the previous convictions he has otherwise been of good character.”

Cllr Finn moved to grant the application to Mr Wright which was seconded by Cllr Walker.

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