A MAN who was caught behind the wheel of a car during a driving ban has been spared jail.
Anthony Fada was pulled over by police in Western Approach, South Shields, on December 29.
When officers carried out a background check on the 45-year-old they found he was disqualified from driving until May this year.
Fada, of West Stevenson Street, South Shields, also had no insurance to drive the Ford Mondeo and the car had not passed an MOT.
He pleaded guilty to driving while disqualified, driving without insurance and driving a car without a test certificate at South Tyneside Magistrates’ Court. Magistrates gave him a 16-week prison sentence, suspended for a year and banned him from driving for 16 months.
Fada was also given an electronically-tagged curfew for three months between 7pm and 7am and ordered to pay £85 costs and an £80 victim surcharge.
Chairman of the bench Malcolm Grady said: “This is ridiculous behaviour and is also highly irresponsible. You knew you were disqualified yet you chose to drive - a fragrant breach of a court order.
“If you breach the order this time you will end up in custody.”
John McGlone, prosecuting, said: “He told police he had bought the car a few months ago because he thought the ban was over.
“He accepted that it wasn’t and that there was also no insurance for the car.”
Christopher Brown, defending, said: “His inability to remember dates has always been a surprise to me. He simply cannot diary things and this was a genuine mistake.
“This could have been avoided by remembering the right date. He is 45 now and to keep coming back to court for things like this is ridiculous.
“There was nothing wrong with his driving when he was stopped and he can comply with court orders.
“Sending this man to custody is not the way forward.”