Good Driving Record Helps Appeal on Mid Range PCA Charge

Sydney District Court

Represented by: criminal defence lawyer and traffic lawyer

Facts

Our client was aged 55 when he came to us for advice after being charged with drink driving. He had held a driver’s licence for 38 years, without incurring any infringement notices or demerit points.

He was pulled over by police for a random breath test and recorded a positive result.

Our client was arrested and taken back to the police station for a breath analysis, which returned a reading of 0.135. He was charged with Mid Range PCA and his licence was immediately suspended.

On our recommendations, in order to mitigate the charges against him, our client participated in the Traffic Offender Intervention Program prior to the matter being completed in court. We also obtained some excellent character references on our client’s behalf, and were able to demonstrate his genuine need for a driver’s licence.

Result

At first instance, the local court magistrate found that, notwithstanding our client’s excellent prior good character and outstanding driving record, the blood alcohol reading of 0.135 was too high to avoid a recorded conviction and disqualification.

In addition to a conviction against his name, our client was also fined $1,200 and disqualified from driving for 12 months (which exceeded the minimum period by six months).

On our client’s instructions, we appealed to the Sydney District Court. Our submissions as to our client’s impeccable driving record, and the fact that his offending was discovered through random breath testing and not another traffic infringement, impressed the judge. By the time of the appeal, our client had already been off the road for over four months and the minimum time for disqualification upon conviction would only be a further two months.

His Honour found that it was not expedient to record a conviction, and dismissed the matter. Our client was placed on a 12-month good behaviour bond under section 10.

A winning outcome

Although our client’s blood alcohol reading was in the upper part of the mid range, his excellent driving record was of great assistance in our successful appeal against a criminal conviction and lengthy licence disqualification.