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Thursday 21 August 2014

Man United's Ashley Young has speeding fine slashed

Richard Vernalls

Published 31/01/2014 | 11:30

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Ashley Young insists the 'character' and 'team spirit' at Manchester United is high
Ashley Young

Manchester United and England winger Ashley Young has had a £3,000 fine for speeding slashed after being wrongly overcharged by sentencing magistrates.

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Young, 28, was given a six-month driving ban on Thursday after speeding at 71 miles per hour on a 50mph section of the M6 Toll motorway in Warwickshire in March last year.

The winger received four penalty points at the hearing, earning him a driving ban from Leamington magistrates under the totting-up rule.

However, it has emerged that he was wrongly ordered to pay a £3,000 fine after an error by the presiding bench. He will now pay less than half that amount.

An application was heard at the Leamington court on Friday to reopen the case on the basis the fine was incorrectly calculated.

The court's legal adviser Peter Owen informed the sitting chairman of magistrates Ann Homan that she and her bench would need to consider an application to reopen the case to vary sentencing after Thursday's error by her colleagues.

He said: "The bench made an error. The maximum fine which can be imposed for this offence is £2,500.

"The guideline is that you should not go above 75 per cent of the maximum fine, so that would be £1,875 - then we have credit for a guilty plea to account for."

Naila Iqbal, who prosecuted Thursday's case, added that the sentencing magistrates had not given Young credit for his guilty plea made the day before what was due to be his trial.

Mr Owen said Young was "entitled to up to a quarter off (the fine) for credit for an early plea - which means a quarter off £1,875".

"The application is to vary the sentence by way of a fine for a sum of money you feel appropriate," he added.

Ms Homan and her fellow lay members of the bench agreed to Friday's application, changing the fine to £1,350.

Before Thursday's hearing Young had nine penalty points on his licence, having previously been convicted of speeding at 100mph on the M62 in West Yorkshire, making him liable for a ban under the rules on totting-up points.

Young was given six points for an earlier offence in January last year and three points for another unspecified incident in 2011.

Along with the incorrect fine, Young was also ordered on Thursday to pay £405 costs and a £120 victim surcharge.

The winger, who told Wakefield Magistrates' Court last July that he was "deeply sorry" for speeding on the M62, spoke only to tell the magistrates he understood the charge, and to confirm his name, age and address.

To be allowed back on the road again, the footballer will have to apply to the DVLA for a new licence once his ban had been served.

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