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Taxi driver admits drink-driving with young passenger in his car

Norwich Magistrates' Court. Picture: Denise Bradley.

Norwich Magistrates' Court. Picture: Denise Bradley.

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A taxi driver caught drink driving with a young passenger in his car was still over the limit the morning after having a litre of vodka, a court heard.

Concerns had been raised about Ovidio Coardos, an ABC taxi driver, after he went into a Co-Op and bought vodka on the morning of January 22, seeming to be under the influence already.

Coardos, 49, was found by police in his car on Dereham Road in Norwich in the vicinity of Larkman Lane.

“There was a young female passenger in the back,” prosecutor Josephine Jones told Norwich Magistrates Court.

“The defendant admitted he had consumed a litre of vodka the previous night and had finished drinking about half 10.”

Coardos, who admitted drink driving, was breathalysed and provided a lower reading of 66mcg in 100ml of breath. The legal limit is 35.

Simon Nicholls, mitigating for Coardos, said he had “fallen foul” of general ignorance about the length of time alcohol takes to leave your system.

“He had a bit of a session the night before and was clearly unaware even after nearly 12 hours there was still alcohol in his system,” he said.

“He accepted he did smell of alcohol, and he had gone into the shop to buy vodka for the following night.

“The problem is, he was over the limit. He is now off the road with a ban today and his employers are losing a very good driver. They obviously can’t continue to employ him because he is going to lose his licence and City Hall will take away his taxi licence.

“Like many people in this court he doesn’t understand how slowly alcohol egresses from your system.

“People just do not get it. You can’t just have seven or eight hours kip and go out to your car and it will be fine.”

Coardos, of Catton Grove Road, was banned from driving for 18 months and ordered to pay a £120 fine, costs of £40 and a victim surcharge of £30.

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