The number of people in Georgetown who are driving motor vehicles without being the holder of a permit is like “an epidemic” a prosecutor has told the court.
Corporal Delando Charles made the observation at the Georgetown Magistrate’s Court today (Monday).
The court was at the time sentencing Tilford Baptiste, 44, of Chilli Village, Georgetown who had pleaded guilty to the two charges of driving without being the holder of a permit and driving an uninsured vehicle.
Baptiste was nabbed as police carried out nationwide stop and search exercises that resulted in hours-long delays for some commuters.
The court heard that on Oct. 13, Sergeant 523 Pitt and other officers were on stop-and-search traffic duty at Mt Young about 7:25 a.m., when he stopped motor vehicle PP5, a white car which was coming from the Georgetown area.
Baptiste, who was the driver of the vehicle, told the sergeant that he was not the holder of a driver’s permit.
Charles told the court that his observations suggest that a lot of people in the area who do not have driver’s permits are driving motor vehicles.
“It’s like an epidemic,” Charles said and asked that the defendant be disqualified from holding a driver’s permit.
He told the court the vehicle had been impounded and was parked on the premises of the Georgetown Police Station.
“Listen, out here is not a Republic” the magistrate, Bertie Pompey, told the defendant.
For driving an uninsured vehicle, Baptiste was ordered to pay a fine of EC$500 forthwith or spend five months in prison.
On the driving permit charge, he was ordered to pay EC$250 forthwith or two months imprisonment.
However, the magistrate varied the sentence of driving without the policy of insurance having heard that the defendant only had EC$600 at the time of sentencing.
As a result, Baptiste was fined EC$400 to be paid forthwith or three and a half months in prison.
The balance of EC$150 is to be paid in one month or two months imprisonment.
He was also disqualified from being the holder of a driver’s permit for a year.