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Third driving ban for 20-year-old who led police on foot chase

The 20-year-old was seen driving a VW Golf into the car park at Tesco, Copdock  Picture: SARAH LUCY BROWN

The 20-year-old was seen driving a VW Golf into the car park at Tesco, Copdock Picture: SARAH LUCY BROWN

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A disqualified driver who ran from police after being spotted behind the wheel has been banned for a third time since passing his test three years ago.

Fabio De Sousa, 20, of Benezet Street, Ipswich, was seen at the wheel of a Volkswagen Golf – carrying two passengers – in the car park of Tesco, at Copdock, at about 3.20pm on February 3.

When police pulled up in front of the car, De Sousa bolted on foot and led a chasing officer on a pursuit into the Pinewood estate, where he was eventually found hiding in a bush.

Following a brief scuffle when De Sousa tried to flee for a second time, another officer arrived and immediately identified him as a disqualified driver.

De Sousa was banned from the road for 16 months last November after overturning a Renault Clio on the A14 at Felixstowe while bending down to retrieve a cigarette lighter.

A blood test later found he had been driving while over the specified limit for cocaine metabolite, benzoylecgonine.

De Sousa had already served a ban under the ‘totting up’ rule after accumulating more than 12 points on his licence for driving without insurance, speeding and using a mobile phone.

His licence had previously been endorsed with points for driving without insurance in 2017.

He appeared at Suffolk Magistrates’ Court on Thursday to admit driving while disqualified, without insurance and wilfully obstructing a police officer

Prosecutor Lesla Small said: “The driving offence was aggravated by the fact he was carrying two passengers; that it was only about three-and-a-half months into his previous disqualification, and not only did he run from the police on one occasion, he tried to run on a second occasion before a scuffle with the officer.”

Representing himself in court, De Sousa said: “I regret the offence more than anything. There wouldn’t have been long left before I got my licence back. I’m not the same person I was when it happened.”

De Sousa said he had recently secured his own studio flat and was eagerly seeking employment after losing his previous job due to the coronavirus pandemic.

Magistrates handed De Sousa an eight-week term of imprisonment, suspended for two years, and added 10 points to the eight already on his licence – banning him from driving for two years.


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