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Officer sniffs out cannabis drug driver stopped for having no insurance, court hears

PUBLISHED: 13:57 10 July 2019 | UPDATED: 14:36 10 July 2019

View south along Hall Quay in Great Yarmouth.  Picture: James Bass

View south along Hall Quay in Great Yarmouth. Picture: James Bass

(C) Archant Norfolk 2013

A self-employed plumber caught drug-driving with no insurance has been banned from the roads for a year.

Ryan Jacobs, of Kingfisher Close, Bradwell, admitted driving while over the legal limit for cannabis when he was caught by police in North Quay, Great Yarmouth on January 30.

Appearing at Great Yarmouth Magistrates Court on Wednesday, July 10, the court heard the 34-year-old had initially been stopped for having no insurance, but the officer smelled cannabis and a roadside saliva test gave a positive reading for the drug of 3.6 when the legal limit is two.

Defending Chris Bowles said: "I do not know what the science is but there is no suggestion that Mr Jacobs was in any way impaired.

"He would not have been able to carry on with his journey if he was.

"It is a Ford transit that had been off the road for some time.

"He arranged for it to be insured online. As far as he was concerned he was okay to drive.

"He was horrified when the officer said he was not.

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"He looked at his phone and there was a message in his spam box saying it had been cancelled. He immediately arranged insurance cover on his phone in front of the officer.

"The 'no insurance' was a mistake, it's as simple as that.

"There was no suggestion he was impaired. He had a spliff the night before."

A letter from his mother was produced saying he had been going through a bad time, was depressed, and had some financial worries.

Mr Bowles added: "He is not somebody that takes drugs regularly.

"He is a self-employed plumber and desperately needs his vehicle and will not be able to use it when he is off the road as you (the magistrates) will disqualify him."

Chairman of the bench Jane Bowles said: "We are obliged to disqualify you for drug driving but for the minimum which is 12 months."

No separate penalty was given for not having insurance.

He was also ordered to pay £515 in fines, costs and victim surcharge.

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