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British woman fined after failing breathalyser test
A British woman who came to Trinidad to play mas and who was arrested for driving under the influence of alcohol has been fined $4,000. Louise Smart, 51, who is staying at Bayside Towers, Cocorite was ordered to pay the money within a week or in default, she will serve six months’ hard labour.
Smart, a pharmacist for the past 30 years, pleaded guilty to driving under the influence when she appeared before Chief Magistrate Marcia Ayers-Caesar in the Port-of-Spain Eighth Court yesterday. The court heard from Sgt Edward Edmund that Smart was stopped around 4.15 pm on February 11 as she drove along Wainright Street, St Clair.
Submitting to a breathalyser, Smart’s blood alcohol level was measured and found to be 87 microgrammes per every 100 milliliters of breath. The legal limit is 35 mg per every 100 ml of breath. Holding for Ravi Rajcoomar, attorney John Heath told the before Smart arrived in January, she had lived in Trinidad for six years before moving away.
Heath explained that Smart had to leave her Carnival band prematurely on Monday, after she discovered her cellphone missing. Admitting that Smart had consumed alcoholic beverages in the band before her abrupt departure, Heath said Smart was contrite and never meant any disrespect to the police or the citizens of this country.
Inviting Edmund to address the court, Ayers-Caesar later imposed the fine after he called for Smart to answer the charges and be dealt with accordingly. In another matter, Wayne Beharry of Fort George Road, St James, was also charged after he failed the breathalyser on Monday. Beharry was charged with driving under the influence on February 11 at Western Main Road, St James.
Pleading guilty with an explanation, he told the court he had just returned home from playing J’Ouvert, when the police called him about a relative who had been driving without a licence. Recalling his first instinct to help, Beharry said although he had been drinking and knew he had exceeded the legal limit, he went to the station to assist and was later subjected to a breathalyser test, which he failed.
Adjourning the matter to February 18 for facts, tracing and sentencing, Ayers-Caesar granted Beharry $5,000 own bail as she explained that police complainants were exempt from attending court on Carnival Monday and Tuesday, as well as Ash Wednesday, hence the absence of a file.
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