Top jockey spared jail after harassment

ONE of Britain's top jockeys was given a 12-month supervision order today at his Ipswich Crown Court sentencing for harassing his estranged wife.Judge John Devaux also fined Suffolk-based John Egan £750 and put ten penalty points on his driving licence after the 38-year-old had also admitted being in charge of a motor vehicle while being above the legal alcohol limit.

ONE of Britain's top jockeys was given a 12-month supervision order at Ipswich Crown Court today for harassing his estranged wife.

Judge John Devaux also fined Suffolk-based John Egan £750 and put ten penalty points on his driving licence after the 38-year-old had also admitted being in charge of a motor vehicle while being above the legal alcohol limit.

In addition the troubled jockey was fined £500 for possessing a shotgun without a certificate. He was also prohibited from any shooting activity, including handling or possessing a firearm, for two years.

Prosecutor John Fenn told the court Egan, of Dalham, near Newmarket, had pleaded guilty to the offences, which occurred last November, at a hearing in December before Bury St Edmunds' magistrates.


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Mr Fenn said the father-of-two's marriage to his estranged wife Sandra had broken down last October.

A court order had been taken out by Mrs Egan to prevent Egan returning to the family home and using threats or violence.

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Judge Devaux heard Egan had breached the order between November 22 and 30 last year, committing various acts of harassment.

He had also sent her dozens of text messages, including 25 on one particular day.

Police were called to the family's home in Coltsfoot Green, Wickhambrook, near Newmarket, by Mrs Egan where her husband had been swearing and abusive.

When officers arrived they searched Egan and discovered 11 shotgun cartridges in his pockets. They then inspected his BMW X5 which was on the road outside and found a shotgun in the boot.

The court heard Egan had previously surrendered his gun licence on November 3, although during a pre-sentence report he claimed the shotgun was left in the car by a friend.

The officers suspected Egan had been drinking and a subsequent breath test showed he had 59 microgrammes of alcohol in 100 millilitres of blood. The legal limit is 35 mcgs.

Egan, who has since received treatment at The Priory rehabilitation clinic which also treats celebrities, insisted he did not drive the car. He claimed a friend had driven him to the house and then walked home.

The court was told although Egan had no previous convictions, he had received a caution from police in October last year for assaulting his wife. On that occasion his wife said he had problems controlling his temper and had grabbed her before pushing her against a wall. He also damaged their bedroom door during the same incident.

Mitigating for Egan, Mark Haslam said his client has sustained injuries in a bad fall at Wolverhampton late last year and after that time the jockey's behaviour towards his wife was unacceptable and out of character.

Mr Haslam said since then his client had addressed many issues surrounding the problems which troubled him.

One report said the fall had contributed to a temporary depressive illness.

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