Sutton boozer told breath test cops: “I think not.”

Gavel and scales

Gavel and scales

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A boozy joiner who refused a breath test when police stopped him pushing his broken-down van along a Sutton street narrowly escaped a driving ban, a court heard.

Vadim Ivanov was pushing his works van along Church Street, in the early hours of April 28, when he was stopped by police and asked to submit to a breath test.

“He was slurring his words and became argumentative,” said Ruth Snodin, prosecuting. “He was asked a number of times and said: “I think not.”

“When asked if there was a medical reason, he replied: “I don’t want to.””

Ivanov, 45, of Jubilee Road, Sutton, admitted failing to provide a specimen for analysis when he appeared before magistrates in Mansfield, on Wednesday.

Bill Saughton, mitigating, said the clutch had gone in the self-employed joiner’s van earlier in the evening and he was pushing it the 700 metres home when he was stopped.

“He thought - “I can’t leave it where it is because there are several thousand pounds of tools in the back.”

“What he should have done was give a sample of breath. There was no propsect of him driving it. It was undrivable.”

Mr Saughton said a ban would be “a disaster” for Ivanov, who drives around 60 miles a day for work and has contracts coming up in Sheffield.

He was given ten penalty points, and fined £400, with a £40 victim surcharge and £85 court costs.