Banned motorist caught driving with cloned number plates in South Shields told he could be jailed

A motorist caught driving while banned and on cloned number plates in the early hours in South Tyneside could be jailed.
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Carl Clarke, 34, was serving a suspended prison term for earlier motoring matters when pulled over by police near a South Shields seafront car park.

Appearing at court in South Tyneside, he pleaded guilty to charges of driving while disqualified and driving without insurance on Friday, July 14.

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Magistrates declined to sentence Clarke, of The Bungalows, Sunderland Road, Felling, Gateshead, and instead sent him to be dealt with by a judge at Newcastle Crown Court.

The case was heard at South Tyneside Magistrates' CourtThe case was heard at South Tyneside Magistrates' Court
The case was heard at South Tyneside Magistrates' Court

They heard he had recently been jailed for 16 months at the crown court, suspended for 18 months, for other motoring offences.

And they ruled the same venue was best suited to deal with his new sentencing hearing, set for Monday, February 5, and issues around his suspended prison term.

Prosecutor Paul Clark said: “An officer was on duty on mobile patrol at 12.40am when he saw a black Mercedes vehicle driving on cloned plates.

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“The vehicle was caused to stop at Trow Lea, which leads to a car park. He informed the officer that he was a disqualified driver and did not have insurance.

“A check on the police national computer showed the defendant is disqualified to January 31st and that he needs to pass an extended test before he can drive.

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“He has matters at the crown court which relate to driving offences. He is on a suspended sentence of 16 months, suspended for 18 months.

“This matter should be committed to the crown court.”

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John Williams, defending, told magistrates: “I think you will be looking to commit to the crown court for sentencing.”

Magistrates told Clarke they were sending his case to the higher court. They granted him unconditional bail.