Mechanic drove on unlicensed L plates for 14 years
A MECHANIC who drove unlicensed for 14 years has been given a prison sentence for his "absolute disregard of the road rules".
Appearing at Cleveland Magistrates Court on Tuesday, Anthony John Boulus, 35, pleaded guilty to multiple counts of failing to appear and driving a motor vehicle without a driver's licence as a repeat offender.
He was sentenced to one month imprisonment suspended over 12 months with a conviction recorded.
The court heard Boulus, a Mansfield man and father of four, had not renewed his learner's licence after it expired 14 years ago.
Magistrate Deborah Vasta said the defendant had been sentenced for unlicensed driving on 11 previous occasions, twice while driving with a drug in his system and had shown "an absolute disregard of the road rules".
"If you drive unlicensed again you can pack a toothbrush," Magistrate Vasta said.
"You are not special; we all have to get our licence.
"When someone comes past me at 100 km/h with just metres to spare I want to know they know the road rules.
"Your learner's licence expired 14 years ago and since then you haven't done anything about it, you've just gone 'stuff that, I'll just drive when I want.
"How come you have never done what all of us have had to do, which is actually go and pass the test?"
The court heard Boulus' most recent traffic offending included unlicensed driving on February 21 last year at Stapleton; on September 14 last year on the Warrego Hwy at Plainland and at Glenore Grove on October 30, also last year.
In each instance the defendant had no emergent reason for driving and was variously fetching milk or test-driving a vehicle.
Boulus was also intercepted by police at Toondah Harbour trying to board a ferry.
The court heard Boulus admitted to police in each instance that he was unlicensed.
The defendant, who represented himself, said he had been "running the gauntlet for a while" and had failed to get his licence due to "just sheer laziness".
The Mansfield man said he also had some difficulty with reading and writing.
Magistrate Vasta urged Boulus to practice his licence test online and warned him that many road rules, such as giving way to cyclists, had changed since 2006.
In addition to his suspended prison sentence Boulus was disqualified from driving for one month and placed on a $500 good behaviour bond over 12 months.
Originally published as Mechanic drove on unlicensed L plates for 14 years