Drink-driver returns seven months later to receive drug-driving ban

Edward Wilkes was over the limit for drink and drugs when pulled over last May Picture: RACHEL EDGE

Edward Wilkes was over the limit for drink and drugs when pulled over last May Picture: RACHEL EDGE - Credit: Archant

A convicted drink-driver was called back to court after blood tests showed he also had drugs in his system at the time.

Edward Wilkes had already appeared at Suffolk Magistrates' Court last June to admit driving with 41 microgrammes of alcohol in 100 millilitres of blood - the legal limit being 35mcg.

Last Friday, the 27-year-old returned to the same court to admit driving with 60mcg of cocaine metabolite benzoylecgonine per litre of blood on the same date.

The court heard that Wilkes had completed all but one session of a drink-driving rehabilitation course, which would have reduced his sentence by a quarter and allowed him to reclaim his licence in March.

But magistrates had no choice but to disqualify him for another 12 months - the statutory minimum ban for anyone caught drug-driving.

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Wilkes provided a positive breath test after being pulled over in a Mercedes Sprinter van on the A1038 at Stowmarket at about 7.10pm on May 25, 2019.

He was later banned from driving for 12 months - leading to the loss of his job - and subsequently charged with drug-driving following the results of blood tests.

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Claire Lockwood, mitigating, said Wilkes, of Danes Close, Stowmarket, had been given permission to drive his work van but was not on the clock at the time of the offences.

"He accepts he took a small amount of cocaine," she added.

"He had been at a barbecue and was drinking beer, and at some point earlier, had taken some drugs.

"He was very co-operative with police at the roadside and in custody at the police investigation centre.

"Since losing his employment, he's had some work here and there, but can only volunteer for jobs that don't involve driving.

"Although not currently working, he's positive he will find something. He's willing to do anything and has quite a lot of skills.

"He had paid for the drink-driving rehabilitation course and had completed all but the last session - although he won't benefit from it because he faces a minimum 12-month ban."

Magistrates disqualified Wilkes for 12 months and ordered him to pay a £120 fine, £105 costs and a £30 statutory fee towards victim services.

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