Unlicensed scooter rider jailed after bus crash and for shirking unpaid work

Magistrates' court in Ipswich. Picture: SIMON PARKER

Magistrates' court in Ipswich. Picture: SIMON PARKER - Credit: Archant

A man who served three years in Polish jail is starting 12 weeks’ custody in this country for theft, probation breaches and crashing an unlicensed scooter into a bus.

Rafal Rutkowski admitted driving without a licence or insurance, shoplifting, failing to give blood for testing, and failing to complete unpaid work for previous crimes, when he faced magistrates in Ipswich on Monday.

The 36-year-old, of no fixed address, gave a positive breath test after the scooter he was riding collided with a bus on the B1506 at Kentford on September 22, 2017.

Prosecutor Tess Mann said: “He was taken to hospital, where a doctor’s consent was obtained to take blood for analysis. But the defendant refused – giving no medical reason for the refusal.”

Rutkowski could not recall being asked to give blood – telling the court he remembered only being breathalysed a second time.

But the prosecution read a statement from police – supported by a body worn video – confirming Rutkowski “clearly understood” and refused to give blood.

Rutkowski told the court he had been drinking before the crash.

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Through an interpreter, he said: “I met a geezer who offered me a moped for £80.

“I wanted to give it a spin from Newmarket to Kentford, where I used to live, but because I was under the influence of alcohol, I can’t recall what happened.”

Rutkowski also pleaded guilty to stealing a pair of Dunlop work trousers from Sports Direct in Bury St Edmunds on April 14.

Last July, he received 120 hours of unpaid work for burgling a flat while the owner was on holiday – an order he breached by failing to turn up in September, October and February – completing none of the work, despite being reminded in two languages by probation.

He served three years for theft in Poland before his offending began in this country in 2012, when he assaulted a police officer while drunk – a crime he repeated in 2015, before adding criminal damage to his record a year later.

Rutkowski told the court he had struggled to find housing and work, and claimed not to have received written warnings from the probation service.

“I haven’t been successful in life,” said the father-of-one.

“I ask you to give me another chance. I’m sorry.”

Magistrates heard Rutkowski’s plea but handed him 12 weeks’ custody, revoked the previous community order and banned him driving for 18 months.

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