Popular Saturday night entertainer Ant McPartlin (of Ant and Dec fame) got in to the news recently when he was arrested for drink driving on 18th March 2018 after being involved in a three car collision.
On 16th April 2018 he appeared in the Magistrates’ Court, where he pleaded guilty to drink driving. When he was breathalysed, his reading was 75mg (more that twice the legal limit of 35).
Sentence was passed on the day, which is not unusual. Mr McPartlin was fined, which was again unusual. What is unusual was the level of the fine – a huge £86,000.
It used to be the case that the maximum fine in the Magistrates’ Court was £5,000, but this was changed in 2015 for offences committed after 12th March 2015, and there is now no limit to the level of the fine.
Which is why, with a weekly income of £130,000, Mr McPartlin got such a large hit. He would also have had to pay a surcharge and prosecution costs, both of which would have paled in to significant in light of the fine.
He was also disqualified for 20 months, which is also in line with what we can expect.
So next time someone asks if celebrities get a good deal from the court, you can point to Mr McPartlin as in indication that they are treated as everyone else would be.