Drunk driver with expired learner’s permit fined

By Nikita Braxton-Benjamin

 A father who was caught driving drunk with his children in the back seat was last Friday fined $8,000, placed on bail, and told to return to court with the driver’s permit he claimed was under the medicine cabinet at his home.

However, when Ronnie Ramkissoon turned up before the San Fernando Traffic Court, on Monday, he was empty-handed.

Instead Magistrate Indar Jagroo learnt that Ramkissoon had a learner’s permit which expired in 2012.

Last Friday, Ramkissoon, a security guard, pleaded guilty to five charges including driving under the influence, driving without a driver’s permit and insurance and failing to produce the items.

The court had heard that following a Boxing Day lime in San Juan, Ramkissoon’s vehicle, which was also occupied by his wife and two children, was seen swerving along the highway.

The family was heading to their South Oropouche home and Ramkissoon said he and his wife were having an argument.

Ramkissoon, 34, was stopped by constable Videsh Oudit who smelt alcohol on his breath.

He confessed to having had “nine drinks of White Oak” and said he knew he will fail the breathalyser test. Ramkissoon had a reading of 92 microgrammes —57 microgrammes over the legal 35 microgrammes limit.

Jagroo fined him a total of $8,000 and ordered that he return to court to be sentenced for driving without the driver’s permit. Ramkissoon had insisted on that day that his valid permit was at home.

But on Monday, he told the court that he could not find the document.

Oudit said checks at the Licensing Office revealed that Ramkissoon was the holder of a learner’s permit which expired in 2012.

Attorney Ainsley Lucky who was retained for Ramkissoon’s court appearance, said his client had not spoken the truth last week as he was not cognitive in his thinking and was frightened by being in court.

He said that Ramkissoon was once involved in an accident which still affected him.

Jagroo ordered that Ramkissoon pay $1,000 immediately or serve three months in jail. 

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