A Peel man who drove under the influence of benzoylecgonine, a metabolite of cocaine, has been sentenced to community service.

Damien Clarke Crowe was 16 times the legal limit for the drug.

The joiner admitted the offence, as well as possessing cocaine and cannabis, and was also banned from driving for two years.

Magistrates ordered him to do 200 hours unpaid work in the next 12 months.

The 28-year-old was also fined £650 for having no insurance and had his licence endorsed with six penalty points.

No separate penalty was made for a fifth offence, of having no vehicle licence.

We previously reported that Crowe, who lives at Mona Street, was driving a Mercedes A180 on November 6, when police received information that it was untaxed.

They stopped Crowe at Main Road in St John’s and he was described by police as having glazed eyes, dilated pupils, and appearing dazed.

A drug wipe test proved positive for drugs and he was subsequently arrested.

A search of the Mercedes found cannabis in a jar, and two wraps of cocaine.

The cannabis was said to weigh one gram and was valued by police at £20, while the cocaine weighed 0.2 grams and was valued at £21.

At police headquarters, a sample of blood was taken which later produced a reading of 800 for benzoylecgonine. The legal limit is 50.

During a police interview, Crowe handed in a prepared statement, admitting that the drugs were his, for personal use. The car’s tax had expired in July 2022 and it was also uninsured.

Defence advocate Jane Gray referred to a probation report detailing Crowe’s personal circumstances at the time of the offence, but said that she did not wish to go into them in open court.

The report assessed him as a low risk of reoffending and of harm to others.

Ms Gray handed in a letter of reference from Crowe’s employer, saying that it spoke very highly of him and that he was a hardworking individual.

The advocate said that Crowe had accepted responsibility for the offences and expressed a high level of remorse.

‘At the time of driving, he felt he was safe to drive,’ said Ms Gray. ‘He was speedng but there was no other evidence of bad driving.’

The advocate went on to say that the levels of drugs which her client was in possession of were low, and would have been normally dealt with by way of a fine, if they had been the only two offences.

Magistrates also ordered Crowe to take an extended test at the end of his ban.