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Man three times the limit drove Lurgan partygoer home because there were no taxis

Court drink driving Craigavon

A man who drove a guest home from a party in Lurgan whilst over three times the legal limit has been fined £300.

Mateusz Kuznik, (31), of Princes Street, Lurgan, appeared before Craigavon Magistrates’ Court on Friday, pleading guilty to a charge of driving with excess alcohol in breath.

The court heard that on September 18 of this year, police observed a vehicle driving on Union Street in Lurgan. It was “about 30 metres” away from police when they witnessed the vehicle mount a nearside kerb and make a sharp turn into Bridge Street.

Police stopped the vehicle and were “immediately aware the driver was drunk because of his presentation.”

The defendant provided a roadside test, which he failed. He was arrested and gave two evidential samples, the lowest being 125mgs of alcohol per 100 mls of breath – the legal limit is 35 mgs.

The defence stated that Kuznik had no record and works part-time in a tailoring business.

He said that on the night in question, the defendant had a “small party” at his house and one guest required a taxi, of which there were none available.

The defendant decided to drive the guest home, which was “about three quarters of a mile down the road”.

Defence conceded that the reading was “very high”, but added that he had a clear record and had entered an early plea.

He added that whilst on holidays, his client had lost his wallet with his Polish driving licence.

District Judge Bernie Kelly noted: “His Polish driving licence is no longer valid in Northern Ireland.”

Judge Kelly imposed a fine of £300, which was to be paid within ten weeks.

Kuznik was also disqualified from driving for 12 months, and will remain disqualified thereafter until he passes the appropriate driving test.

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