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Mum collects ban while fleeing husband

PUBLISHED: 16:08 21 March 2002 | UPDATED: 11:35 03 March 2010

ANTONIA Rupiya has been banned from driving for 12 months after she was found drunk behind the wheel while fleeing from her abusive husband an Ipswich court heard.

ANTONIA Rupiya has been banned from driving for 12 months after she was found drunk behind the wheel while fleeing from her abusive husband an Ipswich court heard.

Rupiya, of Wherstead Road, Ipswich, was driving her husband's Nissan Primera along Nacton Road with no lights on when the police stopped her. When she was breathalised at the police station, the reading was 67 microgrammes of alcohol in 100 millilitres of breath. The legal limit is 35.

Pleading special reasons for her behaviour, the mother of two claimed she only drove because she feared for her safety after her husband had punched her in the face leaving her with a bleeding nose.

Prosecuting, Philip Jones told South East Suffolk Magistrates Court: "The police officer saw the car with no lights on and so put his flashing lights on to pull her over but was ignored. Eventually she stopped outside Holywells High School.

"When she got out of the car she had dry blood all over her face and coat and smelled of alcohol. In interview she told police that she had driven to her friend's house because she wanted to get cleaned up before her children saw her."

The 26-year-old gave evidence about the special reasons why she should not be banned from driving.

The court heard how she had been out with her husband and an argument had started on the way back.

She said he had punched her and told her she could come back in the house when she had stopped crying.

"I did not say this in my interview because I did not want my husband to be arrested," she said.

Chairman of the bench Eric McCoy said: "We do not find that special reasons apply. We accept you were having a personal crisis but it would have been reasonable to call on your neighbour.

Rupiya was disqualified for 12 months and fined £100. She was also ordered to pay £50 costs.


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