A MOTORIST seen driving erratically on the M6 in Cumbria was under the influence of two illegal drugs.

Ian Cassidy, 44, who appeared to have fallen asleep at the wheel of his VW Passat, was found to have used both cocaine and ecstasy, Carlisle's Rickergate Magistrates' Court heard.

He pleaded guilty to driving while over the specified legal limit for both drugs.

Prosecutor Amy Labram told District Judge Gerald Chalk that the alarm was raised by other road users as the defendant drove south on the M6 on Monday, April 22.

"An officer spoke to the defendant and he said he had had a heavy night," said Miss Labram.

Suspecting he was under the influence of either alcohol or some other substance, the officers administered a roadside breath test.

It proved negative for alcohol but drugs swipe returned positive results for both cocaine.

It was later confirmed that Cassidy had in his system both cocaine and ecstasy - almost seven times the legal limit for cocaine breakdown product; and nearly four times the limit for ecstasy.

Lauren Heasley, for Cassidy, of Meadowich, Cheshire, said was at a wedding the previous Saturday.

He admitted to having snorted a few "lines" of cocaine the previous evening, said the lawyer.

The defendant stayed locally with his parents before setting off for his home.

Miss Heasley said the defendant's employer - the owner of a car body shop - had told him he could keep his job, which he has had for the past 14 years.

"His wife is understandably very angry," said the lawyer.

"She feels let down. The job of ferrying their children will fall completely on her."

A man of previous good character, he had made a stupid mistake and regretted it, she added.

District Judge Chalk noted that the prosecution involved two separate drugs, the cocaine at a high level on the Monday evening when he was stopped.

The judge added: "There's evidence of bad driving, and you were travelling some distance, so the risk to other road users was therefore high."

He imposed a 12 month community order, 50 hours of unpaid work, and costs and a victim surcharge of £85 each.

The defendant was banned from driving for two years.