‘A stupid mistake’ – Hornchurch pizza delivery driver admits drink driving in Upminster

PUBLISHED: 13:39 31 May 2019 | UPDATED: 13:59 31 May 2019

Jeyaraja Thusanthan said he had been out drinking with friends and thought he was OK to drive home. Picture: PA

Jeyaraja Thusanthan said he had been out drinking with friends and thought he was OK to drive home. Picture: PA

PA Archive/Press Association Images

A Hornchurch pizza delivery driver has admitted he made “a stupid mistake” after he was caught by police almost three times over the drink driving limit.

Jeyaraja Thusanthan, 37, of Plumpton Avenue, admitted one charge of driving a motor vehicle when alcohol levels were above the legal limit. He appeared at Barkingside Magistrates' Court this morning (Friday, May 31).

Just after midnight on March 12 this year, Thusanthan was stopped by police in Hacton Lane, Upminster.

He had been involved in a damage only collision and was seen to be unsteady on his feet as he got out of his white Vauxhall Safira.

The father-of-three was tested by officers at the scene and found to have 221mg of alcohol per 100ml of blood.

The legal limit in England and Wales is 80mg.

The court heard that Thusanthan had been out for drinks with friends that night to celebrate his 10th wedding anniversary and had believed he was OK to drive home.

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On that journey, he hit a kerb and punctured a tyre.

He told authorities he then tried to call a friend for help, but when that friend didn't answer he decided to attempt to drive to another friend's house nearby with his vehicle's hazard lights on.

It was at this point that police officers stopped him.

Speaking on his behalf, his defence solicitor told the court: "Thankfully because it was quiet there were few other vehicles and no pedestrians on the road.

"He realises the serious nature of this offence and accepts this was a stupid mistake."

Thusanthan also wrote a letter of apology to the court - although this was not read aloud during the hearing.

The court also heard that he is the franchise owner of Pizza Gogo in St Mary's Lane, Upminster, and is the business' only full time delivery driver.

Thusanthan was released on unconditional bail until his sentencing at the same court next Tuesday (June 4).

He was also made the subject of an interim driving disqualification, banning him from getting behind the wheel until that hearing.

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