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WATCH video of drink-driver caught on M23 more than three times over legal limit

Police have released a video to highlight the dangers of drink-driving.

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The dash cam footage shows a van driver – who was more than three times the legal limit – driving almost entirely on the hard shoulder of the M23 southbound. He was also witnessed veering from side to side on several occasions before being stopped by officers.

The Citroen Despatch was reported by a member of the public, who saw it being driven erratically on the motorway, near Crawley, on the evening of Tuesday 25 June.

Police located the vehicle and detained the driver shortly afterwards. He was identified as Konrad Krzywonos, 39, a plumber, of Comptons Court, Horsham.

After failing a roadside breath test, the suspect was arrested and charged with driving with 124mcg of alcohol per 100ml of breath in his system. The legal limit is 35mcg.

At Crawley Magistrates’ Court on 24 July, Krzywonos was sentenced to eight weeks’ imprisonment, suspended for 12 months, and disqualified from driving for 30 months. He was also ordered to pay £85 costs and a £90 victim surcharge.

Sergeant Vicki Rees, of the Sussex Roads Policing Unit, said:

“The manner of driving evidenced in this video falls far below the expected standard of a competent driver.

“By getting behind the wheel while over the drink-drive limit, Krzywonos has taken a significant risk – not only did he pose a real risk to himself that day, he also posed a risk to all other road users.

“Drink and drug-driving is hugely irresponsible, and unfortunately we see all too often how it destroys lives on roads in Sussex – and elsewhere in the UK.

“Our main priorities are to keep people safe on our roads and to crack down on offenders, and anyone caught committing such offences will be dealt with robustly.

“I’d like to thank the member of the public who brought this defendant to our attention, and I’d continue to encourage anyone who suspects someone to be driving under the influence of drink or drugs to report it to us.”

Krzywonos was among 83 people arrested as part of Surrey Police and Sussex Police’s summer crackdown on drink and drug-drivers, which ran from 24 June to 7 July.

Of these, 29 have so far been convicted in court; the remaining have either been charged, released under investigation or released without charge.

If you’re prepared to drive under the influence of drink or drugs, prepare to face the consequences. These could include the following:

  • A minimum 12 month ban;
  • An unlimited fine;
  • A possible prison sentence;
  • A criminal record, which could affect your current and future employment;
  • An increase in your car insurance;
  • Trouble travelling to countries such as the USA.

People in Sussex can text officers on 65999 with the details of people they suspect of drink or drug-driving, or visit the Operation Crackdown website. 

You can also contact the independent charity Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111 or report it online.

If you know someone is driving while over the limit or after taking drugs, call 999.

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UPDATE: ‘I saw two men, one with a knife and the other with an axe’ – Police confirm number of teenagers arrested after weapons seen

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Sussex Police have confirmed an earlier report of a robbery was not correct and that a number of teenagers have been taken into custody after reports of them carrying knives was received.

Police were called to Gales Drive, Crawley, shortly before 5pm on Monday (July 13) to reports of an altercation involving a group of youths, some of whom were seen to be in possession of weapons.

Officers attended and arrested four teenagers aged between 15 and 17 and a 25-year-old man for offences including affray and possession of a bladed article in a public place.

A knife and a bat were also found by police nearby.

A witness at the scene said that they saw two individuals run out of a shop, one carrying a knife and the other carrying an axe, which led to the belief that a shop may have been robbed.

The witness who was with their young family say they had to take refuge in one of the other shops as the two seen leaving the shop ran down an alley just before they saw up to ten youths, all carrying weapons, running away.

There was a high police presence in the area earlier with more witnesses reporting seeing the police racing at speed in vehicles up and down Gales Drive and into the primary school opposite.

Anyone who saw the altercation, or may have any other relevant information about the incident, is asked to contact police online or by calling 101 quoting serial 1044 of 13/07.

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