Trucker fined by court after near miss

A TRUCKER is £500 out of pocket today after being found guilty of driving without due care and attention on the A14 near Ipswich.South East Suffolk Magistrates' Court heard that 42-year-old Conrad Holmes wasn't paying attention when he pulled out in to the fast lane in an HGV while approaching the Whitehouse junction on the eastbound carriageway.

A TRUCKER is £500 out of pocket today after being found guilty of driving without due care and attention on the A14 near Ipswich.

South East Suffolk Magistrates' Court heard that 42-year-old Conrad Holmes wasn't paying attention when he pulled out in to the fast lane in an HGV while approaching the Whitehouse junction on the eastbound carriageway.

His actions forced another motorist to slam on the brakes and veer towards the central reservation barrier.

Magistrates heard that Holmes, of Gilbert Scott Drive, Ely, had not turned up for a previous appearance last month but had been found guilty in his absence of driving without due care and attention.

Gareth Davies, prosecuting, said the incident happened at around 8.10am on October 27, 2006.

He said: “It was rush hour and the traffic was heavy.

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“Without checking his mirror the defendant indicated and commenced a manoeuvre into the offside lane.

“A white Hyundai already in the other lane applied emergency braking and steered towards the central reservation.

“The defendant moved back into lane one, gestured with his hand and shook his head at the driver in an intimidating manner.”

Holmes told magistrates he was not guilty of the offence but had not appeared at court to defend himself because mail relating to the offence had been delivered to his former address where his son now lives.

He said some of the paperwork was passed on to him but as he had never been in trouble with police before he did not fully understand the legal process.

Holmes said: “All I can say is that what was in the driver's statement was wrong.

“I have written a letter to the court stating my part of the driving and it's totally different from his.

“The only thing he's got right is I shook my head.”

The court heard that Holmes already has six points on his licence for driving offences in November 2003 and May 2004.

Magistrates added five points to his licence for the offence, fined him £200 and ordered that he pay costs of £300.

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