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Drug-driver in Brighton disqualified after testing positive for ten substances

Scott Taylor, a 57-year-old man from Brighton, was disqualified from driving for one year after testing positive for ten different substances in his body. On January 20th, Taylor’s van was seen slowly rolling through a red light and then stalling in Ditchling Road. Officers stopped him and found a wrap of heroin and needles inside the van. Taylor was arrested on suspicion of driving while unfit through drugs. He was already under investigation for an earlier drug driving incident at this point.

At Brighton Magistrates’ Court on June 8th, Taylor admitted to driving while unfit through drugs and possession of a class A drug (namely heroin). The court was told that when Taylor stepped out of his grey Vauxhall Vivaro van, he appeared “vacant and spaced out” and “unsteady” on his feet. Ten substances were detected in his urine which included cocaine and the chemical breakdown of cocaine and alcohol, morphine, codeine, diazepam, and ketamine.

Taylor was ordered to complete treatment for drug dependency for six months, with five rehabilitation activity requirement (RAR) sessions. He was also ordered to pay a £114 victim surcharge and £85 costs. He was disqualified from driving for one year.

The offence happened after he was already under investigation for an incident in October 2022. Taylor had been stopped driving on Dyke Road in Hove following two separate 999 calls about his driving on the A23 near Hickstead. He was arrested on suspicion of drug driving and found to be in possession of a wrap of heroin when searched in custody.

A blood sample was taken from Taylor while he was in custody and had been sent away to a forensic laboratory to be analyzed when he committed the further offence. Taylor was issued with a police caution for possession of heroin and later convicted for the driving offence at Brighton Magistrates’ Court on February 23rd.

In that hearing he admitted two charges of driving over a specified drug limit and driving while unfit through drugs. His blood sample tested over the legal limit for diazepam and ketamine. Morphine, oxazepam, and temazepam were also detected in his blood. These combined would have significantly impaired his ability to drive.

At that hearing the court imposed a two-year disqualification from driving, 15 RAR sessions, an £80 fine, £95 surcharge, and £85 costs.

Speaking after both cases PC Steve Lambeth from the Roads Policing Unit said: “Drug-driving is one of the main causes of why people are killed or seriously injured on our roads.

“Taylor is someone who was caught driving just two months after a previous arrest for drug-driving.

“The cocktail of drugs in his system means he was in no fit state to drive and could have caused serious harm to himself and other road users.

“We are pleased that a potentially dangerous driver has been disqualified and I’d like to thank the members of the public who reported their concerns about Taylor’s driving to us.

“It shows our determination to catch offenders and take drug-drivers off our roads.”

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