drunk driving

A MAN who caused a high speed chase with the police after they tried to stop him for not wearing his seat belt, has been banned from driving for three years.

Stefan Ali faced San Fernando magistrate Kerianne Byer on Thursday.

Police prosecutor Sgt Harold Ishmael said it was at 8.45 p.m. on March 13 at La Fortune, Woodland, officers saw Ali was driving his wagon without wearing his seat belt. Constable Ferguson signaled for him to stop. While the vehicle started to slow down, it then increased speed, causing Ferguson to jump out of the way. There was a two minute chase of Ali by the police and cars had to pull away to avoid collision. Ali stopped when a police vehicle blocked his path.

In speaking to him, officers detected the scent of alcohol on his breath. He also admitted that he had consumed alcohol. Breathalyser tests later showed he had a reading of 64 microgrammes - 29 microgrammes over the 35 microgramme limit.

Ferguson charged him with four offences. Byer fined Ali $15,000 for driving while under the influence of alcohol. Should he fail to pay this, he could face a prison term of 18 months at hard labour. He was also fined $5,000 for driving dangerously and could face one year in jail should this money go unpaid. Ali was also ordered to pay $1,000 for each offence of failing to wear his seat belt and failing to comply with a police officer in uniform or face 30 days in jail. He was given six months to pay.

Byer also disqualified Ali from driving for three years.


THE MINISTRY of Health has reported one additional Covid-19 death, bringing the local toll to 98.