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Israel Khan son’s case appealed

...Reprimanded and discharged in drunk driving trial

By Denyse Renne denyse.renne@trinidadexpress.com

The State has appealed the decision of a Chaguanas magistrate to reprimand and discharge the son of prominent criminal attorney Israel Khan, SC on a charge of failing a breathalyser test.

The appeal was lodged on Thursday by the office of the Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP).

James Khan appeared before Magistrate Brambhanan Dubay on January 16, charged with offences relating to him failing the breathalyser test.

According to court documents, shortly after midnight on January 16, officers of the Cunupia Police Station were conducting an exercise when they spotted a blue-and- silver Suzuki Grand Vitara on Railway Road, Cunupia.

The officers noted the driver, James Khan, was driving in an erratic manner. 

He was stopped and, according to the police report, his speech was slurred and his eyes were bloodshot. 

A breathalyser was subsequently administered with a reading of 117 micro grammes for every 100 millilitre. The legal limit is 35 micro grammes of alcohol per 100 millilitre of breath.

Khan, 34, appeared before Dubay where he pleaded guilty.

Court records listed his attorney as D Khan who in his plea for mitigation, told the court James had no previous convictions or pending matters and that his client was remorseful.

After a stern warning, Dubay reprimanded and discharged him.

Since the breathalyser was introduced in 2007, thousands of dollars in fines have been imposed by magistrates, with some drivers having their permits suspended. 

For exceeding the legal alcohol limit in a breathalyser test, a first-time offender can face a maximum prison sentence of three years or a maximum fine of $8,000. 

For a second offence, the maximum fine is $15,000 or imprisonment for five years. 

On a third offence, a convicted person faces disbarment from holding a driver’s permit for life.

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