Hundreds arrested during crackdown on drink and drug-drivers

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Surrey and Sussex Police’s campaign to target drink and drug drivers throughout the month of December resulted in the arrest of 208 individuals in Sussex.

Between December 1, 2016 and January 1, 2017 officers across the two counties carried out dedicated patrols targeting those suspected of driving while under the influence of either drugs or alcohol and raise awareness of the risks and possible consequences.

In the past week a further 27 people were convicted of driving while under the influence of drugs or alcohol, bringing the number of those prosecuted in Sussex as part of the campaign so far to 51.

Superintendent Chris Moon, head of roads policing for Surrey and Sussex, said: “While I am pleased to see that those caught breaking the law are facing the consequences of their actions by way of prosecution, it is still disappointing to see that a small minority of drivers think it is acceptable to drive while under the influence of drugs or alcohol. Driving while under the influence is a serious offence and it won’t be tolerated.

“Just over 28 per cent of those arrested in Sussex during the campaign were unfit to drive through drugs or were over the specified limit for having a controlled drug in their system. This follows the introduction of prescribed limits for a number of legal and illegal drugs in March 2015. Since this time our officers have been using roadside drug wipe testing kits which take swabs from the motorist and can detect cocaine or cannabis use within 10 minutes.

“The consequences of driving while under the influence of drink or drugs isn’t just a fine or a driving ban. You could lose your job, your family and potentially cause significant injury or even death. I would urge all drivers to think carefully before they get behind the wheel of their car.”

Local cases include:

Jamie Bray, 28, who is unemployed, of High Street, Heathfield, was arrested in Westdown Road, Bexhill on December 4 and charged with failing to provide a specimen.

He pleaded guilty at Hastings Magistrates’ Court on January 4 and was disqualified from driving for 18 months. He was also ordered to pay a £20 victim surcharge and £20 costs.

David Deeprose, 66, who is retired, of Eversley Close, St Leonards, was arrested on December 18 in Brede Lane, Sedlescombe and charged with driving with 70mcg of alcohol per 100ml of breath in his system.

He pleaded guilty at Hastings Magistrates’ Court on January 5 and was disqualified from driving for 36 months. He was also order to pay a £150 fine, £85 costs a £30 victim surcharge.

People in Sussex can text officers on 65999 with the details of people they suspect of drink or drug driving or visit http://www.operationcrackdown.co.uk/.

You can also contact the independent charity Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111 (www.crimestoppers-uk.org/).

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