Reformed drinker's ban cut

REFORMED heavy drinker, Leslie Crossley, has had nine months sliced off a three-year driving ban after he broke down in court describing the effect the ban has had on his family and business life.

REFORMED heavy drinker, Leslie Crossley, has had nine months sliced off a three-year driving ban after he broke down in court describing the effect the ban has had on his family and business life.

Magistrates in Ipswich heard how his marriage collapsed soon after he was ordered off the roads in January 2000 for the maximum three years after committing three drink-driving offences within ten years.

Former boozer Crossley, of Falkenham Road, Kirton, was last convicted in July 1999 but now he needs to drive to get to see his three daughters at weekends.

His solicitor, Neil Saunders, told South East Suffolk Magistrates' Court how the lengthy driving ban had a profound effect on his life forcing him to address his problems – but meant his building business began to flourish.

He was "a jobbing builder … someone who would be commonly termed as one of the boys," said Mr Saunders, as he described the type of person Crossley was at the time of his last offence.

The 19-stone man would knock back ten or 12 pints a night with spirit chasers, he added, but on his doctor's advice he now drinks no more than two pints a week.

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Lucrative house building contracts have come his way since he reformed, the court heard.

Giving evidence in his bid to overturn the ban, Crossley, who is in his 40s, told magistrates that the ban had been "devastating".

At times weeping, he added: "At the time I didn't consider the implications with the drink and the implications on my family.

"I don't drink and drive and I've made a conscious effort not to drink during the week and spend more time with my children and on my business – I'm not interested in drinking."

Magistrates agreed to his appeal and reduced the three year driving ban to two years three months.

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