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Three years in jail for 40 unpaid traffic fines

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File photo: APA
10:17 CET+01:00
A man from Tyrol who continued to drive without a license despite being caught and fined by police an astounding 40 times now faces three years in jail.

The 33-year-old repeatedly ignored the fines he was sent and had amassed a debt in unpaid fines of €63,868.

In November he was told he must serve a three-year prison sentence, but was released after 42 days in custody after his lawyer, Hermann Holzmann, argued that he should be allowed to spend Christmas at home with his wife and children.

Holzmann said that his client had his license confiscated in Turkey, after he was caught driving over the legal alcohol limit. Six months later, Turkish police sent his driving license back to the Innsbruck district authority, but Holzmann said it was never returned to his client and the district authority suspended his license for four months and ordered him to take refresher driving lessons and a psychological test.

The 33-year-old felt it was unfair that he was being punished a second time and continued to drive without his license.

District police captain Herbert Hauser said that the man had been told again and again that he was breaking the law and could face time in prison, but that he was stubborn and refused to pay the fines. He will be able to apply for a reduced prison sentence after serving six months behind bars.

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Holzmann has created a payment plan so that his client can pay off the fines in instalments.

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