Goring man jailed after fourth drink-driving conviction

Mareks Vezans from Goring has been jailed. Photo: Sussex Police
Mareks Vezans from Goring has been jailed. Photo: Sussex Police

A persistent drink-driver found slumped at the wheel of his car in Goring has been jailed for 12 weeks, confirmed police.

Police were called by a member of the public who reported seeing a man asleep in a grey BMW 3 series in Sandown Avenue at 3.30pm on Sunday, December 3, a spokesman said.

Officers attended and discovered the vehicle stationary on the wrong side of the road.

They roused the driver, who was identified as Mareks Vezans, 46, a factory worker, of Coleridge Road, Goring, police said.

He was required to undergo a roadside breath test, which he failed, and further tests in custody revealed he had 242mg of alcohol per 100ml of blood in his system.

The legal limit is 80mg.

Vezans was subsequently charged with drink-driving, driving with no insurance and driving while disqualified – at the time of the offence, he was serving a ban for drink-driving in April 2014, police said.

He also has previous convictions for drink-driving in December 2013 and November 2011, added police.

At Worthing Magistrates’ Court on 9 April, Vezans was jailed for 12 weeks and disqualified from driving for 54 months. He was also ordered to pay a £115 victim surcharge.

Chief Inspector Warren Franklin, of the Surrey and Sussex Roads Policing Unit, said: “Drink and drug-driving is one of the four major contributory factors of serious and fatal collisions in the UK.

“There is never an acceptable time to get behind the wheel while under the influence of alcohol and there is no excuse for it.

“While the majority of motorists drive safely and responsibly, there are a number of people who continue to flout the law, which is ultimately in place to protect everyone on our roads.

“Vezans clearly hasn’t learned from his previous mistakes – he is a danger to himself and other road users, and I’m glad this has been recognised in court.

“We take reports of drink and drug-driving extremely seriously, and anyone caught committing these offences will be dealt with robustly.”

Vezans is among 195 arrests made in Sussex during Surrey and Sussex Police’s Christmas crackdown on drink and drug-driving, which ran from 1 December 2017 to 1 January 2018, the spokesman said.

So far, a total of 113 have been convicted in court.

The remaining have either been charged, released under investigation or released without charge.

Among the latest convictions are Terry Parker-Harding, 34, a roofer, of North Farm Road, Lancing.

Parker-Harding was arrested in Chesswood Road, Worthing, on 1 December and charged with driving with 6.5mcg of cannabis per litre of blood in his system.

At Worthing Magistrates’ Court on 3 April, he was disqualified from driving for 12 months.

He was also ordered to pay a £600 fine, £85 costs and a £60 victim surcharge.

Oliver Cairns, 26, a roofer, of Broadwater Way, Worthing, was arrested in South Farm Road, Worthing, on 23 December, and charged with driving with 91mcg of benzoylecgonine, 72mcg of cocaine and 3.7mch of cannabis per litre of blood in his system, and possession of cannabis.

At Worthing Magistrates’ Court on 16 April, he was disqualified from driving for 18 months and sentenced to a 12-month community order, requiring him to carry out 120 hours of unpaid work.

He was also ordered to pay £85 costs and a £85 victim surcharge.

People in Sussex can text officers on 65999 with the details of people they suspect of drink or drug-driving, or visit the Operation Crackdown website.

You can also contact the independent charity Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111 or report it online.

If you know someone is driving while over the limit or after taking drugs, call 999.

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