Ant McPartlin fined £86,000 for drink driving

    Ant McPartlin fined £86,000 for drink driving

    Photo from Wikipedia

    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.

    There are guidelines on sentencing in drink drive cases and a guide to fining people, both of which make clear that account should be taken of someone’s income.

    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.



    1. So how does it work if somebody is living off capital? Say for example, somebody has been recently been made redundant from a well-paid job and has also accepted an offer for another well-paid job to start soon, but for the time being has low income (maybe some bank interest). Does the definition of relevant weekly income constrain the court to treat them as a pauper, or does it get some discretion in the matter?

    2. On the face of it, Mr McPartlin was treated leniently by th DJ(MC). Taking the report at face value, driving OPL with a reading of 75ug is a band C fine. I would increase the starting point for the aggravating accident, but ignoring that, Mr McPartkin is reported to earn £130,000 per week. £130,000 x 150% (band C) less 1/3 for a guilty plea = £130,000. I’d like to,know how the DJ calculated only £86,000.

      • I couldn’t comment on how the DJ decided which band was appropriate to use. But regarding the calculation, the £86k (approx 66%) presumably arose as the result of the band B fine (100%) reduced for guilty plea (with possibly a little rounding in the defendant’s favour).

    3. Just to check – in your opinion would a non-celeb of similar age/previous good character etc also not receive a custodial sentence for committing such an offence (ie over limit by approx same amount, similar circumstances re crash, etc)?

      • PS

        Same question re community order.

        Also – seems some people believe Ant wasn’t given community order due largely/solely to his charity work (the implication being a non-celeb non-charity patron *would* have been given an order). Do such people have a point?