A Portadown man who had planned on only having one beer on a staff night out but had a second has been handed a 12 month ban after being found over the limit.
The 31-year-old’s solicitor also told court that “someone bought him a Coke, which he believes may have had a spirit in it”.
Sebastian Janco, of Kernan Hill Manor, pleaded guilty to driving with excess alcohol in blood at Craigavon Magistrates’ Court on Wednesday.
Prosecution outlined that on November 7, police received a call of a suspected drink driver in a Volkswagen Golf in Portadown.
At 4am, officers stopped a car matching this description on Kernan Hill Manor. They spoke to the driver, who identified himself as the defendant.
After noting that he was unsteady on his feet, his pupils were constricted and he smelled of intoxicating liquor, a preliminary breath test was carried out resulting in a fail.
A subsequent evidential sample taken in custody gave a reading of 46mg of alcohol in 100ml of breath.
Janco opted to give a sample of blood and after analysis this gave a reading of 97mg of alcohol in 100ml of blood – the limit being 80mg.
Defence solicitor Brendan Hagan stated: “He is a Slovak national. I do not have a licence to hand in as he has lost it due to him living here, there and everywhere.
“He works in a restaurant. On the night in question he had been at a staff party and had only intended to have one beer and then go home, but he had two and someone bought him a Coke, which he believes may have had a spirit in it.”
District Judge Amanda Brady said: “His reading was just within the option of a blood test, so it is not the highest reading I have ever seen.”
Janco was disqualified from driving for 12 months and was ordered to pay a fine of £150, along with the offender’s levy of £15, within 10 weeks.
The defendant was certified for the drink driving course which would see his ban reduced to one of nine months upon completion.