20th February 2018
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Peterhead man fined and banned after refusing police breath test

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The weekend turned sour for a blues festival reveller from Peterhead when he refused police a breath test after being caught behind the wheel smelling of alcohol.

Paul Burrell, 39, of the Aberdeenshire town’s Kinmunoy Road, was banned for two years and fined £660 for refusing “point-blank” to give officers a specimen in the Lerwick Hotel car park shortly before 2am on Sunday morning.

Police were concerned on seeing the electrician go out to his van and blocked his exit from the car park. They could smell drink on him and his speech was slurred.

However Burrell refused to co-operate with them and refused to provide a sample. He was arrested and taken to the police station where, again, he refused police a breath test.

Lerwick Sheriff Court heard Burrell had been drinking with his girlfriend during the blues festival throughout the day. His girlfriend went back out after the two had returned to the hotel.

However Burrell got behind the wheel when his partner became upset and phoned to ask him to go and meet her.

Defence agent Tommy Allan said: “He decided to go and pick her up. He got in the van and was stopped by police before he managed to leave the car park.”

He said Burrell would “almost certainly” lose his job and that he was “clutching at straws” when he spoke to the police in the way that he did.

Sheriff Graeme Napier reduced the fine from £1,000 to reflect Burrell’s early plea.

Disqualifying him from driving, he said the ban could be reduced by six months if he completed a drink drivers rehabilitation course.

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