Man Jailed For Riding Jet Ski Four Hours From Scotland To See Girlfriend During Lockdown

by : Emma Rosemurgey on : 15 Dec 2020 11:34
Man Jailed For Riding Jet Ski Four Hours From Scotland To See Girlfriend During LockdownPixabay

A man has been jailed for four weeks for travelling from Scotland to the Isle of Man on a jet ski to see his girlfriend.

Dale McLaughlan, from North Ayrshire in Scotland, broke coronavirus restrictions by making the four-and-a-half hour journey from his home in the Isle of Whithorn, to Ramsey on the Isle of Man.


The 28-year-old, who had never ridden on a jet ski before he made the maiden voyage, admitted in Douglas Courthouse that he had arrived on the island unlawfully.

Under current lockdown restrictions, anyone who doesn’t live on the Isle of Man must obtain a special permit before they are allowed to visit the island, however McLaughlan arrived on Friday, December 11, without one.

Man Jailed For Riding Jet Ski Four Hours From Scotland To See Girlfriend During LockdownWikimedia Commons

McLaughlan told the court he had previously been given permission to enter the island in September for four weeks, so he could carry out some work as a roofer. After isolating for 14 days, the dad went on a night out, which is where he met his girlfriend, BBC News reported.


After returning to Scotland, he made several more attempts to legally return to the island to see his girlfriend, however they were all rejected, prompting the tradesman to make the unlawful journey across the Irish Sea.

After arriving at Ramsay at around 1pm, McLaughlan then walked 15 miles to his girlfriend’s home in Douglas. The next day, police arrived at the address and the 28-year-old claimed that he also lived in the home.

The very same day, both McLaughlan and his girlfriend, who had only been living on the island for a short time, went to two packed nightclubs, breaking further COVID-19 restrictions.

Man Jailed For Riding Jet Ski Four Hours From Scotland To See Girlfriend During LockdownPexels

He has since been sentenced to four weeks in prison.

Speaking after the verdict, McLaughlan’s mother Allison told The Sun:

He was supposed to be going over for work but as far as I know they put it off till January 11.

I didn’t even know about the jet ski. I just don’t know why he did it – he could have killed himself.

He’ll be missing his kids over Christmas.

McLaughlan told the court he had been suffering from depression, which is what led to him ‘carefully planning’ his unlawful journey to see his girlfriend.


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Emma Rosemurgey

Emma Rosemurgey is an NCTJ trained Journalist who started her career by producing The Royal Rosemurgey newspaper in 2004, which kept her family up to date with the goings on of her sleepy north east village. She graduated from the University of Central Lancashire in Preston and started her career in regional newspapers before joining Tyla (formerly Pretty 52) in 2017, and progressing onto UNILAD in 2019.

Topics: News, Legal, Now, Scotland


BBC and 1 other
  1. BBC

    Covid: Man jailed for Scotland-Isle of Man water scooter crossing

  2. The Sun

    Dad who crossed Irish Sea from Scotland to Isle of Man on JET SKI to see girlfriend is jailed for breaking Covid laws