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Judge slams £10,000 fine imposed on Artur Boruc
A JUDGE has described as "ludicrous" a £10,000 fine imposed on Saints goalkeeper Artur Boruc for failing to keep the tyres on his Porsche in check.
The Polish international, who has played a pivotal role in Saints epic start to the season, found himself facing the hefty fine after being pulled over by police and charged with four motoring offences.
He appeared in court where magistrates ordered he must pay the maximum penalty of £2,500 for each offence - with no credit given despite his guilty plea.
But yesterday the 33-year-old successfully appealed his punishment after a judge at Southampton Crown Court ruled the penalty ridiculous.
Boruc - who injured heft hand in the 3-1 defeat against Chelsea last month and will be out of action until the New Year - had pleaded guilty at Southampton Magistrates Court to having insufficient tread on two tyres, which prosecutor Tim Compton described as 'minimal'.
He also admitted having a tear on one of the tyres and two tears on a third near their sidewalls.
Why Boruc was stopped by the police at the junction of Blechynden terrace and Wyndham Place was not revealed but the court heard that when he was told by the police he was being reported over the tyres, Boruc said under caution, “Thank you.”
Yesterday at Southampton Crown Court Judge Derwin Hope, who sat with two magistrates, expressed his shock at the sentence during an appeal hearing which Boruc did not attend.
“That can't be right,” he exclaimed. “That's ludicrous.”
Mr Compton quipped: “To use an old phrase 'you might think that but I couldn't possibly comment.”
To which the judge replied: “I can.”
The court then reduced the fine to £1,000 on three fines and on the fourth gave him no separate penalty.
“This appeal must be allowed,” said the judge following a short deliberation with the magistrates. “There were a number of faults with what has happened. We consider this entirely wrong.”
In Boruc's absence, Sarah Wheadon, defending, said the Porsche had been registered in 2011 and was two years old, and on its last service there had been no indication from the garage there was any problem with the tyres.
“It has been regularly serviced. The tracking on the Porsche was later found to be slightly out, something which you would not expect after a service,” she added.
“He immediately had the tyres replaced and he was fully cooperative with the police.”