A MAN was hoping to be paid £1,000 for wrongly telling police he was the driver of a car involved in a crash.
Nicholas Hogg wanted the money to buy amphetamine, Durham Crown Court heard.
Prosecutor Adrian Dent said a BMW 320 crashed on the A1086 Coast Road, Blackhall, causing injuries to one of the occupants.
“Another man left the scene,” added Mr Dent. “Police asked the injured man who was driving.
“He declined to say because he was not a grass, but said he would get the driver to contact them.
“Hogg contacted the police to say he was the driver.”
The court heard officers were suspicious and checked the driver’s airbag of the BMW for DNA.
“Hogg didn’t match the sample,” added Mr Dent. “He was not even there when the accident happened.”
Hogg, 41, of Elizabeth Street, Blackhall Colliery, admitted perverting the course of justice on August 4.
David Lamb, defending, said: “Mr Hogg was offered £1,000 to do this, but he tells me he hasn’t been paid.
“He does have a criminal record, but has not offended since 2006.”
The Recorder, Mr Tahir Khan QC, sentenced Hogg to nine months in prison, suspended for 12 months, and 200 hours of community work.
“You lied to police by falsely claiming you were the driver of the car,” the recorder told Hogg. “That was a foolish thing to do, but when spoken to again you had the good sense to tell the police of your earlier lies.
“This early admission of what you did enables me to extend a degree of mercy and not send you immediately to custody.”