Shortland Street actor banned from driving

ROB KIDD
Last updated 14:26 19/12/2013
Ben Mitchell
BANNED FROM DRIVING: Shortland Street actor Ben Mitchell

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A Shortland Street actor known for his love of driving won't be getting behind the wheel for at least another seven months.

Benjamin Harawira Quid Mitchell, better known as the hunky Dr T K Samuels on the iconic kiwi medical drama, pleaded guilty in Auckland District Court this morning, to a charge of driving while suspended.

The heart-throb actor lost his licence in October for excess demerit points but was caught behind the wheel on Hobson St on December 6, the court heard.

"He says he was very, very busy on that day and didn't have someone to drive him around. He had important things to do so he says he took the chance," his lawyer said.

"He realises it was foolish and takes responsibility for that."

A community magistrate fined him $300 and disqualified him from driving for six months, which would start at the end of January when his previous suspension was to end.

The ban will be a blow to the star who, only days before the October suspension, told a newspaper about his love of driving his black Holden Commodore.

"It's powerful. And it looks good. It suits me," Mitchell said.

Mitchell said he was the only one allowed behind the wheel of his beloved Holden but it looks as though he might have to renege or explore other options.

He has previously commented: "Bikes are for children, you need to step up from adolescence".

But outside court today he admitted he might have to don the lycra until his ban is over.

"I'll need to do some cardio to work of that Christmas pudding," Mitchell said.

A number of fans shook his hand as he left court.

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