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Monday 29 May 2017

Gascoigne on trial for drink-driving

Alistair Keely in London

TROUBLED football star Paul Gascoigne represented himself in his drink-driving trial yesterday after his lawyer quit.

The case was adjourned following hours of legal wrangling.

Gascoigne (43) is accused of driving a Ford Transit van while more than four times the limit on February 7 at Leeming Bar, North Yorkshire, England.

Northallerton Magistrates Court was told he was found to have 467 milligrams of alcohol in 100 millilitres of urine. The legal limit is 107 milligrams.

He denies the charge. He has also pleaded not guilty to driving without insurance.

The former footballer was due to be represented by lawyer Stephen Andrews, but he withdrew from the case after lengthy legal discussions yesterday morning.

Mr Andrews told magistrates he had only recently been instructed and he needed more time to prepare his case and call witnesses. He said some of the legal documents relating to the case had been sent to Gascoigne's old address in Jesmond.

The court was told Gascoigne now lives at his father's house in Gateshead. But Mr Andrews application to adjourn was dismissed. The bench accused Gascoigne of creating a delay.

The magistrates said they intended to hear the case along with that of co-accused Michael Harvey. Mr Harvey (41) of Wood Street, Gateshead, is accused of similar offences.

He has denied driving a Ford Transit van over the legal limit on February 7 at Leeming Bar.

The court was told he had 259 milligrams of alcohol in 100 millilitres of urine. He has also denied driving without insurance and driving while disqualified.

Charles Weidner, representing Mr Harvey, also applied for the case to be adjourned. He argued his client's case would be prejudiced as Gascoigne was no longer legally represented. The application was rejected.

The court was due to hear evidence in the afternoon but it was finally adjourned after magistrates heard there was not enough time left in the day to hear the case.

Mr Andrews came back into court and told the bench he would be representing Gascoigne at the new trial. The court has yet to fix a date for the new trial.

Irish Independent

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