Banned Burnley driver jailed

Burnley Magistrates' Court
Burnley Magistrates' Court
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A driver who keeps getting behind the wheel while banned has been locked up for 16 weeks.

Burnley magistrates heard how Ryan Tomlinson (28) had been caught four times in the last two years. He was arrested for the latest offence after he went to get some cocaine with passengers in his vehicle and someone told the police.

Tomlinson's solicitor told the hearing that realistically, custody was the only sentence that could be passed as the probation service could do nothing to help him rehabilitate - and he had "taken it like a man."

Mrs Tracy Yates (prosecuting) said an informant told the police the defendant had left the Alma Inn in Burnley in a car to buy drugs and would be returning a short time later. Officers were told Tomlinson was disqualified.

Police saw the vehicle pull up down the side of the Alma Inn, the defendant was asked if he was banned and he said he was. He was searched and asked if he had any drugs.

Mrs Yates continued: "He said 'I have got a little bit in a snap bag in my wallet.' A small amount of powder, consistent with personal use, was found and he was detained.

The prosecutor added Tomlinson had 18 offences on his record, including convictions for drugs and had received a suspended prison term and later custody for driving while disqualified.

The defendant's lawyer told the hearing that Tomlinson had been told he would be going to custody and had lived with that hanging over his head for six months.

He said the defendant, who suffered from anxiety and depression, had pleaded guilty at the first opportunity.

"He realises he cannot go on in the same manner. He's got to try and mend his ways. That's what he tells me."

Tomlinson, of Coultate Street, Burnley, admitted driving while disqualified on Accrington Road, in the town, possessing cocaine and no insurance, on February 24th. He was banned for 20 months and must pay a £115 victim surcharge.