Suspended jail term for disqualified driver

DRIVING his son to hospital whilst disqualified has landed a Bradford man with a suspended prison sentence.

George Brankin, of Worthington Court, Bradford, appeared at Bridlington Magistrates Court last week charged with driving whilst disqualified and without insurance near Driffield.

Brankin, 58, had pleaded guilty to the charges at an earlier hearing and attended court for sentencing, after the probation service had completed a pre-sentence report.

Prosecuting, Victoria Mills said that police had stopped Brankin on the A164 near Driffield on December 16 last year, as part of a random road safety check.

When the car was pulled over, Brankin originally gave a false name and could not produce a license, but later admitted to police that he had been disqualified in April last year.

Mitigating, Luke Yarrow told magistrates that Brankin had been given help in getting around by a friend, who had passed away not long before the incident.

He said the defendant was concerned about his son, who has a long term illness and was living in Bridlington and had recently lost 30kg in weight in a short period of time.

“Although his son wanted to remain independent, Mr Brankin was obviously very concerned about him and got the train to Bridlington to check on him,” said Mr Yarrow.

“He made the decision to bring his son home to the Bradford area and decided to drive back to Bradford to take him to hospital and look after him.”

Presiding magistrate Mike Bowman told Brankin that he appreciated the difficult situation, but driving while disqualified was a serious offence.

“We feel it is so serious, it must be punished with four months in prison, but it will be suspended for 12 months,” said Mr Bowman.

“You could have killed someone, or caused a serious accident and there would be no recourse against you to claim money back.” Magistrates also endorsed Brankin’s license with six penalty points, and a further six for the charge of driving without insurance, and ordered him to pay £85 in court costs.