Tuesday, 01 December 2015

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Cumbrian man spared electronic tag - because his house is too big

A drink-driver was spared wearing an ankle tag, because his house is too big.

Fifty-seven-year-old David Eley, a live-in hotel owner, would lose his signal to the monitoring unit, which would be used to keep track of his whereabouts, even when he was still within his own four walls.

A court heard how it would be impossible to enforce the curfew at his home in the Peel Hotel and extra monitoring units would be needed in guest bedrooms, something the court ruled inappropriate.

Eley told the court he had been following the curfew, despite the equipment being unable to be installed

Once set-up, an electronic tag sends a signal to the monitoring unit, which is relayed to the G4S control centre, sending an alert if the wearer breaks curfew.

He was originally sentenced to a curfew from 8pm to 6am after he pleaded guilty to drink-driving in Furness Magistrates’ Court on May 20.

He was caught reversing a Vauxhall Zafira while more than two-and-a-half times the legal limit on April 6.

He said: “Since the sentence was given to me I’ve not left the building between 8pm and 6am even though I’ve not had the tag.

“All the CCTV can be checked. I’m not saying I’m happy.”

Probation officer Brian Carruthers told the court Eley, of Millom, had failed to attend court for his sentencing, which he was appealing against, because he had been in hospital for 10 days.

“He is on nine tablets a day and (his condition) is causing him panic attacks,” he said. “I do not think unpaid work would be appropriate.

“I don’t think supervision would be appropriate as he does not have offending behaviour and he tells me that he has been on a self-imposed curfew for the last three weeks.”

The curfew order was revoked and Eley has been ordered to pay a £400 fine.

He remains banned from driving for two years.


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