A judge ordered a man who left a clubber with a suspected fractured skull to give up booze for 100 days - only to agree to delay the ban until his return from a trip to Amsterdam this weekend.
Recorder Daniel Stevenson had told Harry Saunders he would spare him immediate custody and impose the strict alcohol abstinence requirement as part of a suspended sentence for his part in a late-night brawl in Herne Bay high street.
The vigorous condition works by offenders having an electronic 'sobriety' tag fitted to the ankle, which then detects alcohol consumption through sweat samples being taken every 30 minutes around-the-clock.
A court can order one to be worn for up to 120 days and any breaches can result in further punishment.
But within minutes of being released from the dock at Canterbury Crown Court at the end of his sentencing hearing yesterday, the red-faced 20-year-old revealed details of his pre-paid trip to his lawyer, who then had to return to ask the judge to postpone the fitting of the tag.
James Harrison, defending, told the court the construction worker was due to leave for the Netherlands capital today and return in the early hours of Monday.
Recorder Stevenson initially remarked that by booking the trip Saunders had shown a "rather astonishing degree of confidence in the outcome of the case".
But on agreeing to the request and ordering that monitoring start from Tuesday, he warned Saunders: "Can I give you some advice? Don't get drunk in Amsterdam."
The judge had earlier told Saunders he had come "extremely close" to being locked up for "appalling public violence" in the early hours of August 14, 2021.
The court heard Luke Barratt, who had enjoyed a night in the nearby Vivid nightclub, was trying to intervene in a punch-up in the High Street when Saunders, who had not been in the club, struck him.
The single blow caused him to fall to the ground and hit his head "very hard". But despite the "obvious" serious injury caused, Saunders continued to fight with others, taking off his shirt "like a hooligan" before being overpowered.
Mr Barratt was described as "fluctuating in and out of consciousness" as he was taken to hospital, where a subsequent scan detected the suspected fracture and haemorrhage.
But it was another two years before Saunders, of The Coppice in Sturry, Canterbury, was charged - a delay branded "significant and inexplicable" by Recorder Stevenson and one of the reasons he could spare him a spell in youth detention.
He said that the defendant, who was aged 18 at the time of the attack, was not only "a very different person" to the one on the night of the assault but also "capable of so much more".
"You became involved in some sort of argument. When you squared up to a friend of Luke Barratt's, he tried to intervene. You started a fight with the friend and punched him to the floor while your friend threw punches at Luke Barratt," remarked the judge.
"On seeing his friend on the floor, [Mr Barratt] tried to push you away and in response you punched him, causing him to fall to the floor and strike his head very hard in a way which was very obvious to others there.
"I have watched the footage of this incident taken on a mobile phone and you can hear the sound of Luke Barratt's head striking the floor and the shocked reaction of those present.
"It ought to have been obvious from the way he struck his head and the way others reacted that he was no threat to you and had been seriously injured. But you didn't stop.
"You fought with other people before they eventually got the better of you. You removed your shirt like some sort of hooligan."
But having been told of the defendant's difficult childhood, exposure to domestic abuse, and diagnosis of ADHD, Recorder Stevenson said it was "to his credit" that he had left college with qualifications, gained employment and had a good work ethic.
“At the time you committed this offence you were just 18 years old and I have read a great deal about you, and that is a very different picture to the one I have watched in the relevant footage,” he added.
He also told Saunders, who had pleaded guilty to an offence of affray, he was "fortunate" the victim had not suffered a fatal injury.
However, on the issue of his mental health, Recorder Stevenson said although he accepted ADHD can cause impulsive behaviour, it was the "vast amount" of alcohol he had drunk that was to blame for his actions that night.
Suspending an 18-month custodial sentence for two years, the judge explained he had taken several factors into consideration, including the delay, his genuine remorse, lack of previous convictions, the current state of the prison population and the realistic prospect of rehabilitation.
As well as the alcohol abstinence condition, Saunders was ordered to pay compensation of £1,000 to Mr Barratt, carry out 200 hours of unpaid work, and attend 15 rehabilitation activity sessions.