By LAUREL V WILLIAMS Wednesday, August 5 2015
SECOND-TIME offender for Driving Under the Influence (DUI) of alcohol, Brian Harripersad, 27, has been suspended from driving for the next three years, he having pleaded guilty yesterday in the Siparia Magistrates’ Court.
Senior Magistrate Armina Deonarinsingh, presiding in the First Court, also fined Harripersad the sum of $5,000 for the offence committed at Santa Cecilia Trace, San Francique, Penal.
Court prosecutor Sgt Anthony Baptiste told the court that at about 6.40 pm on Monday, Harripersad and another person went to the Penal Police Station to report a road traffic accident which had earlier occurred at San Francique. Whilst interviewing Harripersad, police detected the strong odour of alcohol in his breadth.
Police conducted two breathalyser tests on Harripersad and the results showed that he had 58 and 51 microgrammes of alcohol per 100 millilitres of breath, which are both above the legal limit. The legal limit is 35 microgrammes of alcohol per 100 millilitres of breath and PC Ramlochan laid the charge.
When police told him of the offence committed, the prosecutor said that Harripersad responded: “Spare meh nah horsie (sic).”
In mitigation, Harripersad’s attorney Roopnarine Rambachan said his client is a painter/straightener , who has been driving for the past five years. He added that based on instructions, his client had “nothing on record” meaning neither previous convictions, nor pending matters.
But the prosecutor noted that based on documents before him, Harripersad had two pending matters for DUI. Looking at the document, the magistrate enquired from Harripersad the status of the cases which occurred at Penal in 2010 and again in 2012 at Point Fortin. Harripersad responded that for the offence at Penal, a Siparia magistrate had fined him $2,000 and the other offence was “thrown away”.
Shaking her head in the negative, the magistrate noted the law mandates that for second-time offenders, they be disqualified from driving for three years. The disqualification became effective yesterday for Harripersad.
“The previous fine ( of $2,000) was a small one. This time you are fined $5,000 or in default, nine months (in jail),” she said.
The magistrate ordered that he pay $2,000 forthwith with 30 days to pay the outstanding balance.