Seventh drink-driving conviction

BELINDA FEEK
Last updated 17:23 04/12/2012

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A Hamilton man convicted on his seventh drink driving charge has been warned not to get behind the wheel again.

Tony Maxwell Tipene, 48, a student, of Glenview, was driving along Shakespeare St in Cambridge at 8.20am on May 24 when he was stopped during a checkpoint set up by police.

He recorded a level of 148mlg of blood. The legal adult limit is 80mlg.

A pre-sentence report recommended a community detention sentence, but that was dismissed by Judge Merelina Burnett who believed that was not tough enough.

‘‘First thing in the morning, people are on their way to work and you (drive) twice the legal blood alcohol limit.’’

She said after his last conviction in 2008, when he received a community-based sentence, he also had the advantage of supervision but it clearly hadn’t helped him.

Judge Burnett told Tipene that if he decided to drink alcohol that was his choice, ‘‘just don’t get behind the wheel’’.

‘‘Previously you have had very high readings. This is, for you, at a more moderate level but it’s still grossly over.’’

She sentenced Tipene to six months’ home detention and disqualified him from driving for three years.

She also invoked Section 65b(2) of the Land Transport Act which stipulates that after when that disqualification ends, he must abide by a 0 alcohol level for another for three years.

Tipene was also ordered to pay medical costs and analysts fees of $168.

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- © Fairfax NZ News

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