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Drink driver who crashed into M1 barrier given 16 month ban

'He instructs that he had been drinking the night before, quite heavily,' his defence said.

Police accident RTC night

A man who collided with a central barrier on the M1 whilst driving over the limit has been handed a 16 month disqualification.

Prior to sentencing the 43-year-old, the district judge commented: “There are aggravated circumstances in this case. He was drink driving on the motorway and there could have been a more serious outcome.”

Janusz Filipczak, of Albert Street in Lurgan, had a guilty plea entered on his behalf to driving with excess alcohol at Armagh Magistrates’ Court, sitting at Newry.

Prosecution outlined that on October 26, at 6.40am, police received a report of a crash involving a Vauxhall Corsa on the M1 near the Birches in Portadown.

Officers arrived and noted damage to around 25-metres of the central barrier, with the vehicle which had collided with it on a grass verge.

The defendant was located in the vicinity. He was identified as the driver and after detecting a smell of intoxicating liquor, a preliminary breath test was conducted resulting in a fail.

Filipczak was then conveyed to Dungannon Custody Suite, where an evidential sample of breath was obtained which gave a reading of 58mg of alcohol in 100ml of breath.

Defence solicitor Ruairi Maguire stated: “He co-opertaed fully with police, this was an early guilty plea. This is a man who works full time and has always worked full time.

“He instructs that he had been drinking the night before, quite heavily. He got up the next morning and he was under the impression that he was fit to drive.”

District Judge Paul Copeland commented: “There are aggravated circumstances in this case. He was drink driving on the motorway and there could have been a more serious outcome.”

Filipczak was disqualified from driving for 16 months and was ordered to pay a fine of £200, along with the offender’s levy of £15.

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