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Nwicker60
13-Aug-13, 09:21
Sheriff rejects motion for forfeiture of accused's car

A THURSO, breathalysed by police, had been drinking at a golf tournament Wick Sheriff Court heard yesterday. John Watson, 57, failed to comply with follow-up tests at Thurso police station and was charged with failing to provide two samples of breath without a reasonable excuse.
The decommissioning officer came to the attention of police while they were investigating a road traffic matter on Saturday afternoon. David Barclay, prosecuting, said it became apparent to officers from his demeanour, that the accused had been drinking and the usual procedures were carried out.
Mr Barclay made a motion for forfeiture of Watson's car, said to have a value of between 5000 and 5,500 but the accused's solicitor, Ken Ferguson claimed it would be "inappropriate" in this case" and Sheriff Andrew Berry agreed.
Mr Ferguson added: "The accused was clearly under the influence of drink but whether or not he would have failed the police station tests is a matter of debate. He panicked, realised he had been drinking and didn't co-operate with the officers. He deeply regrets that." Watson was fined 500 and banned for a year.
The sheriff took into account that Watson, of Albyn Court, Thurso, has a good driving record and had pleaded guilty at an early stage. He was advised that loss of his licence would not cost the accused his job.
Sheriff Berry told Watson: "I think you understand that there has to be compliance with police officers. The accused can earn a three months reduction on the disqualification if the successfully completes the drinks-drivers' rehabilitation course.