South Shields motorist banned for drug-driving after being found with 'sleepy' eyes and 'shivering'

Sleepy eyes and a bout of shivering at the wheel led to a South Tyneside driver being exposed as a drug taker, a court heard.

Saeed Laskar’s demeanor in his VW Scirocco after being pulled over on the A183 Whitburn Road, Whitburn, was enough for an alcohol breath test.

Laskar, 27, of Palmerston Street, near Tyne Dock, South Shields, gave a negative reading but a blood test after his arrest revealed cannabis in his system.

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It was the second time in five years he had been found over the drug-drive limit – and he is now starting a three-year road’s ban.

South Tyneside Magistrates Court.

At South Tyneside Magistrates’ Court, District Judge Zoe Passfield said it was concerning he had repeated his past crime.

Prosecutor Elizabeth Winchester told the hearing: “Officers were on mobile patrol when their attention was drawn to a vehicle being driven by the defendant.

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“The reason was that it was being driven at excess of the speed limit. They activated their lights and the defendant pulled over.

“They noticed that his eyes were sleepy, and he was shivering, which suggested that he was under the influence.

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“A roadside breath test came back as zero. He was taken to the police station where a drugs test was undertaken.

“The crown would submit it’s a mandatory three-year disqualification for a second relevant offence.”

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The test produced a reading for cannabis derivative tetrahydrocannabinol, or THC, of 7mcg per litre of blood. The legal limit is 2mcg.

The court heard Laskar has five previous convictions, including for drug-driving in 2017.

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He was also convicted of conspiring to pervert the course of justice in 2019.

Joanne Gatens, defending Laskar, who pleaded guilty to drug-driving, said: “From his record, he has been involved with the wrong people in the past.

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“He says that he gravitated back towards the wrong people which led to him taking cannabis again.

“I appreciate from his record that you’ll be concerned that this is his second drug-drive.”

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Banning jobless Laskar from driving, Judge Passfield told him: “It is concerning that it’s your second conviction for drug driving.”

He was fined £180, with £85 court costs and a £34 victim surcharge.