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Case Report: Driving After Taking Prescription Drugs

Former Great British Kayak rower and current world record holder successfully won his case at trial with three magistrates unanimously finding him not guilty of driving whilst under the influence of drugs. Our client is notably a high achiever who was not unfamiliar with the routine drug test. He is a patron for charities who support mental health and has always been very open about his struggle with bi-polar disorder, depression and anxiety.

Driving After DrugsAfter a world record attempt at crossing Lake Geneva in a kayak, our client took his usual dose of prescription drugs in order to help calm the anxiety he expected to feel as a result of the flight home. Later that day our client was arrested following a car accident where he had most unfortunately crashed his van in to the side of a country road. After failing the Field Impairment Test and being over the limit on a blood test, the Police charged him for driving a vehicle whilst being unfit through drugs.

Throughout the case our client was very honest to the police about what prescription drugs he had taken and indeed informed them that he was a regular user of Benzodiaxepine, Duloxetine and Sodium Valproate therefore his tolerance for taking the medication was in his opinion relatively high.

Our client ended up going to Trial for a whole day at Guildford Magistrates Court where he had to go through the nerve-racking experience of giving oral evidence before the Court. After a very emotional and fraught day our client was elated to find out that the Magistrates found him not guilty. For our client the stress and expense in attending a final trial was worth the result as had he been found guilty he would have faced at least a years driving ban and a criminal record.

Our client had the following comment to make:-

"A huge thanks to Nicki and Dominic for all their support. The prosecution are only doing their job but I found it fairly awful to have my medical records aired in public and character assassinated. Having campaigned for mental health charities, I felt very strongly about the subject matter of the case both personally and on a wider scale and it was an anxious time. Nicki was great and prevented me from reacting emotionally. She helped me stay calm and logical and I couldn’t have done it without her"