Drink-drivers out of jail

LYN HUMPHREYS
Last updated 05:00 22/12/2012

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Two repeat drink-drivers have been given get-out-of-jail-free cards just in time for Christmas after successfully appealing their sentences.

Paul Thomas Donovan Edie and Tony Watson Simpson were locked up on December 6 after being handed down three-month jail terms for being caught drink-driving.

In the New Plymouth District Court both Edie and Simpson had pleaded guilty to drink-driving and were sentenced by Judge Allan Roberts.

It was Edie's third drink-driving offence and Simpson's fifth.

In the High Court at New Plymouth this week, the jail sentences were appealed by their lawyer Amy Dallison who argued jailing the two men was manifestly excessive and both should have received community-based sentences.

In his written decision, Justice Allan agreed, quashing the jail terms.

In Simpson's case, the judge substituted a sentence of four months community detention.

Simpson will be curfewed to his Waitara homefrom 8pm to 6am and undergo six months supervision to allow him to carry on with his drug and alcohol counselling under the oversight of the Probation Service.

For Edie, Justice Allan substituted a sentence of three months home detention at his New Plymouth home.

Edie was issued with a final warning that prison would be inevitable if he re-offended.

He is also to attend alcohol and drug counselling.

Both men remain disqualified from driving for one year.

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- © Fairfax NZ News

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