A teenage drug-driver has been fined £1,250 and banned from driving for two years.

Joseph Thomas Nicholson admitted the offence and was also ordered by magistrates to take an extended test at the end of his ban.

His ‘R’ plate period will also now run for two years after the ban ends.

Prosecuting advocate Barry Swain told the court that 17-year-old Nicholson was stopped by police for a routine check on December 15 at 8.39am, on Main Road in Ballabeg.

When officers spoke to him they reported that he had red, glazed eyes and a subsequent drug wipe test proved positive for cannabis.

Nicholson was arrested and taken to police headquarters where he gave a sample of blood which was sent to Cellmark Forensic Services and later produced a result of 7.7.

The legal limit for cannabis is two.

Mr Swain said that Nicholson, who lives at Ballacriy Park, Colby, had co-operated throughout the testing procedure.

The court heard that he had no previous convictions.

Defence advocate Stephen Wood said that his client was only just 17 at the time of the offence and had experimented with cannabis the evening before he was stopped by police.

The advocate asked for credit to be given for the guilty plea and said that Nicholson had driven the following day, believing he would be under the limit.

Mr Wood said it had been a routine stop by the police and there was no suggestion of any poor driving.

Nicholson’s mother was said to have offered to pay his fine and he was then going to pay her back as he has a part-time job.

Magistrates also ordered the teenager to pay £125 prosecution costs and gave him 14 days to pay all amounts.