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Four-month jail sentence for banned driver

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A 38-year-old man who was driving while he was drunk and disqualified was jailed for four months last Wednesday at Craigavon Magistrates Court.

Andrej Sakovic, Jervis Street, Portadown, was sentenced to four months in prison and banned for five years for driving while disqualified on February 15 this year.

Concurrent four-month jail terms and five-year bans were imposed for driving with excess alcohol and not having insurance.

The court heard that at approximately 1.25am police saw a car being driven along Thomas Street with no headlights on. They stopped it in Church Street.

They asked the defendant, who was driving, if he had been drinking and he replied that he had not.

His speech was slurred, his eyes glazed and he failed a preliminary breath test. A check of records showed he was a disqualified driver. A breath test gave a reading of 74.

Sakovic said he had mistakenly believed he had been banned for two years and not for two years and six months which was the case.

A barrister representing the defendant said he should have known he was a disqualified driver at the time.

He added that Sakovic had been drinking alcohol in a bar and his vehicle was close by. A number of people near the vehicle were arguing and he made the decision to take the car away from potential danger.

District Judge, Mr Mervyn Bates, said the defendant had originally been disqualified for four years in 2011 and on appeal this was reduced to two years and six months.

But, he added, the defendant could have been in no doubt on February 15 this year he was disqualified and the only possible sentence was custody.

 

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