On the spot fine would have saved driver from six month ban

A motorist was who was originally given the chance to pay a fixed penalty for having no insurance has instead been banned from the road after a court heard it was his sixth such offence.

Richard Thomas Johnson, 43, of Grindwell Road, Brae, could not afford the on-the-spot fine when he was caught by police on 28th February.

He had been driving on the unclassified road between Dales Voe and Lerwick.

Johnson admitted the offence.

At Lerwick Sheriff Court on Wednesday, defence agent Tommy Allan said Johnson had recently acquired the car, although he had since passed it on.

But Sheriff Ian Cruickshank noted this was the accused’s sixth conviction for driving without insurance.

“I could impose a discretionary disqualification,” he said. “It’s a definite possibility.”

Mr Allan added that, had Johnson been able to pay the fixed penalty, he would have avoided being banned.

Sheriff Cruickshank disqualified Johnson from holding or obtaining a licence for six months and fined him £300.

He also fined him £200 for a separate charge of drug possession, after Johnson admitted having a 0.2 gramme wrap of heroin on 14th June in the car park of Lerwick Baptist Church.

Procurator fiscal Duncan MacKenzie said the drug was worth £20. Mr Allan said drugs were “no longer an issue” for his client.


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