Share

Clear spells

Sat

16°C | 8°C

Sunny spells

Sun

16°C | 10°C

Mostly sunny

Mon

18°C | 10°C

Home   Canterbury   News   Article

Herne Bay motorist Keith Baldock driving legally with 54 points on his licence after avoiding ban at Canterbury Crown Court

20 February 2014
by Paul Hooper

A thieving motorist is driving around Herne Bay with a staggering 54 penalty points on his licence.

And yet jobless dad-of-two Keith Baldock, 34, is at the wheel of his van legally.

Despite the Road Traffic Act requiring a driver to have their licence seized at 12 points, Baldock has managed to avoid a ban.

Jobless Keith Baldock has 54 points on his licence

Jobless Keith Baldock has 54 points on his licence

Now he is believed to top the list of Britain's motorists with the most points, but still allowed to drive.

In November, Judge Nigel Van Der Bijl slapped 30 points on Baldock's licence – but allowed him to keep driving "to look for a job".

It was only then the DVLA realised Baldock, of Thornden Wood Road, already had 24 points before last November's 30 points were added.

"I think at the earlier hearing that he was not disqualified, but in fact he should have been disqualified unless there was exceptional hardship. Unfortunately there is not a great deal we can do about it now..." - prosecutor Francis Lloyd

Bosses wrote to Canterbury Crown Court asking for it to review its decision not to ban Baldock from the road, but the appeal came too late to make any changes.

Prosecutor Francis Lloyd told Judge Van Der Bijl that under legislation there was nothing that could be done to impose a retrospective ban.

He said: "I think at the earlier hearing that he was not disqualified, but in fact he should have been disqualified unless there was exceptional hardship. Unfortunately there is not a great deal we can do about it now."

Mr Lloyd said "any variation in the substance" of a sentence had to be done within 56 days, adding: "We are well past that time."

The prosecutor said: "He is a lucky fella."

Judge Van Der Bijl replied: "A lucky man indeed. Case closed."

Judge Nigel Van Der Bijl

Judge Nigel Van Der Bijl

At last year's hearing, the court was told how Baldock had gone from garage to garage in Canterbury, Barham, Herne Bay and Margate stealing £500 of fuel in an uninsured car.

But, despite hitting him with six points for each of five offences, Judge Van Der Bijl allowed the jobless father to continue driving.

He said: "I am making no order for disqualification because if he is looking for work he will need a car."

Baldock had pleaded guilty to thefts from garages in High Street, Herne Bay, Dover Road, Barham, two in Sturry Road, Canterbury, and another in Margate.

The case was heard at Canterbury Crown Court

Barristers will also go on strike at Canterbury Crown Court

Baldock claimed he had his Jobseekers' Allowance stopped and turned to stealing "out of desperation" to feed his family.

He was given a 12-month supervision order, a two-month curfew order and told to repay the money within a year.

DVLA spokesman Karen Powell said after the case: "While we're not prepared to comment on this specific case, I can confirm that we routinely contact courts when notified that a driver has accumulated more than 12 points but has not been disqualified from driving.

"It is for the court to decide whether to reopen the case."


Stories you might have missed 

Three held in murder probe after man, 20, dies from stab wounds

Pair charged with robbing Post Office

Two women rescued from car after crash

Student's battle against cancer ends tragically after 21 years


 

Click here for more news from Canterbury.

Click here for more news from around the county.

Comments 

Forgotten Password?

Forgotten Username?

Don't have an account? Please Register first!

The KM Group does not moderate comments.
Please click here for our house rules.

Thank you. Your comment has been received and will appear on the site shortly.

 

Terms of Comments
We do not actively moderate, monitor or edit contributions to the reader comments but we may intervene and take such action as we think necessary, please click here for our house rules.. If you have any concerns over the contents on our site, please either register those concerns using the report abuse button, contact us here, email multimediadesk@thekmgroup.co.uk or call 01634 227989.