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Court in Moray: Drink driver banned for a third time

By Alistair Whitfield

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Elgin Sheriff Court.
Elgin Sheriff Court.

A drink driver has been banned for the third time after he consumed a bottle of wine then got into a car.

John Dillon, a plant operative, was staying in Moray for work reasons on September 20.

At about 7.30pm that evening he stopped to get something to eat at the Grampian Hotel in Keith.

Elgin Sheriff Court heard that Dillon had a bottle of wine with his meal, then left at 8.45pm.

Realising that he was intending to drive, one of the hotel's staff took a video of him setting off down the A96, then phoned the police.

Officers traced the vehicle to where Dillon was staying about a quarter of a mile away.

A breath test recorded a reading of 39, compared to the legal limit of 22.

Defence solicitor Stephen Carty admitted his 64-year-old client had made a "very foolish decision".

The lawyer added: "His original intention was to leave the car where it was, walk back, then come and pick it up again the next day."

The court was told that Dillon had been banned twice before, once in 1986 and again in 2012.

Mr Carty stated that this latest offence had already caused his client financial hardship.

Last week, in order to attend court, Dillon had flown up to Moray from his home in Maidstone near London.

After the case didn't go ahead, Dillon then had to make a repeat journey by air this week.

Speaking directly to the defendant, Sheriff David Harvie said: "I'm told this is a lapse of judgment. It's not the first.

"You're not a child any more. The first time you were banned was 37 years ago and here you are again, a man in his 60s, and you've still not learned."

Sheriff Harvie banned Dillon from the roads for 16 months and fined him £400.

View our fact sheet on court reporting here

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