Factory worker narrowly avoids going to jail for driving while banned
PUBLISHED: 12:48 01 August 2019 | UPDATED: 13:19 01 August 2019
An Ipswich man has been given a suspended prison sentence for driving while disqualified.
Vasile Tocila was caught behind the wheel of a silver Volkswagen Golf, in Bramford Road, Ipswich, after being banned for accumulating more than 12 penalty points.
The 26-year-old admitted driving while disqualified and without valid insurance at Suffolk Magistrates' Court this week.
Father-of-three, Tocila, was caught driving at about 11.45am on Friday, November 23 - having been banned from the road for a year.
Helen Korfanty, mitigating, said Tocila acknowledged he should not having been driving, but had no other means of transporting himself and members of his family to work at a chicken factory in Eye. She said he had continued to pay for car insurance, despite it being invalid.
Tocila, of Elliott Street, Ipswich, was disqualified for 'totting up' more than 12 points for a string of motoring offences, including two three-point penalties for speeding and six-point penalties for failing to provide information about the identity of the driver of a vehicle at the time of an alleged offence.
He had already served a six-month ban, imposed in December 2017, for totting up more than 12 points.
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Before being sentenced, Tocila told the probation service he had been confused and had not realised he was disqualified from driving.
He said the speeding offences had been committed while rushing to work after being delayed by an accident, and trying to get to a hospital appointment.
He said the reason for failing to provide information about the identity of a driver was due to moving house and not receiving documentation through the post.
Tocila said he and his family would no longer be able to work at the chicken factory without him providing transport.
Magistrates said the offence of driving while disqualified had crossed the threshold for a custodial sentence.
However, they chose to suspend a period of eight weeks' imprisonment for the next 12 months.
They imposed no separate penalty for driving while disqualified, but Tocila's licence will be endorsed.
He was ordered to carry out 100 hours of unpaid work in the community and was banned from driving for 12 months.