Written by Sian Hall
April 3rd, 2018

It recently came to our attention that a recent defendant had been contacted by the DVLA and advised that they had recently been convicted of a drink-driving offence with a high reading and would therefore be required to have a medical assessment before their licence was to be returned.

The reality of the situation seems to be that the client had actually been convicted of failing to provide a blood sample for analysis, when suspected of being unfit as a result of the consumption of controlled drugs.

The defendant had a choice to make as to whether or not he was to contact Swansea to correct the misunderstanding.

Strangely, the defendant decided he was going to do nothing at all. He felt on balance he would prefer to have a drink-drive conviction on his record, rather than a conviction relating to drug-driving. His reasoning was that drugs were far more frowned upon than drink and his chances of being able to travel internationally were likely to be less restricted with a conviction that related to drink rather than drugs.

It was pointed out that a medical report might take some time and cost a substantial amount of money, leading to the driver being out of pocket and potentially without his licence for a longer period. Nevertheless, he decided not to contact the DVLA on the basis that he believed that in the long run he would be better with the erroneous matter recorded against him, rather than the drug-related offence.

Interesting to see the stigma that still attaches to the use of controlled drugs as compared to a serious incidence of driving with excess alcohol.

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Categories: Criminal Law ,Road Traffic Law

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