Sunderland motorist found to be three times the limit after he drove 'in front of the officers cutting the police vehicle up'

A motorist was found to be three time the limit when he ‘cut up’ police officers in Sunderland.

Thursday, 16th January 2020, 5:42 pm
Updated Monday, 20th January 2020, 10:28 am
South Shields Magistrates' Court.

Ionut Mitache, 36, pleaded guilty to driving with excess alcohol and without insurance when he appeared before South Tyneside Magistrates’ Court.

The Romanian, who lives in Hylton Road, was spotted by police on Chester Road at 6.15pm on December 6 driving erratically.

Clare Irving, prosecuting, said: “The defendant is seen veering from lane to lane. He comes up in front of the officers cutting the police vehicle up.”

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She said he continues on, veering into other lanes and almost causing a collision.

Ms Irving said the police pulled him over and said: “Your driving is shocking, you are all over the road.”

She said they could tell he had been drinking and he admitted to the officers he had had two or three pints.

Mitache, who had a passenger in the car at the time, was found to have 108 microgrammes of alcohol in 100 millilitres of breath, with the limit being 35.

The defendant, who was not represented in court, was asked by District Judge Kathryn Meek why he had carried out the offence and he said: “I was drunk, that was the reason.

“I promise I will not do this thing again.”

A spokesman for the probation service said Mitache came to England in 2014 because he wanted to find work.

He said: “He has not really settled here and wants to go back to Romania, but his family enjoy the money he sends. He is desperate to work because of a need to send money back to his family.

“He said he knew he was over the limit and knew he should not have driven the car, but he did.”

He said Mitache, who is currently working as a car wash attendant, recognises what he has done wrong.

Judge Meek said: “It was good luck rather than anything else that no-one was injured or there was any damage to property.”

Mitache was banned from driving for 26 months and given a 12-week prison sentence, suspended for 12 months. He was ordered to pay £85 costs and £121 surcharge.