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Six-time banned Dundee driver dodges jail to keep job at coronavirus-hit Perthshire poultry plant

Forfar Sheriff Court.
Forfar Sheriff Court.

A worker in the Perthshire poultry plant at the centre of a major Covid-19 outbreak has clung on to his driver’s licence despite the latest offences in an “appalling” record.

Five-time disqualified driver John Wade was caught again behind the wheel and without insurance on a rural road in Angus during lockdown.

The 32-year-old, of Findhorn Street, Dundee was facing jail after a sheriff deferred sentence because of his previous record but Wade has now been given a final chance to continue to turn his life around.

Solicitor Gary Foulis told Forfar Sheriff Court: “It is not a record that my client is proud of, that’s a starting point.

“By his own admission, he accepts what he did was madness.

“To a certain extent he has turned his life around and he realises what he did has jeopardised the good work he has achieved over the past four years,” added Mr Foulis.

He said Wade had been working at the Coupar Angus 2 Sisters poultry processing plant for the last 18 months.

“His life was blighted by the use of illicit substances when he was younger but he no longer has any addiction issues, does not go out at the weekend and simply gets his head down,” added Mr Foulis.

“Mr Wade realises the precarious position he is in because of his record.”

In 2016, Wade was sent behind bars for 11 months after admitting his fifth disqualified driving offence when he was caught in the car park of Perth Prison.

Sheriff Gregor Murray told the accused, who admitted the May 24 offence on Pitairlie Road, Newbigging: “I am prepared to accept you have changed and that you can mature and grow out of offending.

“I’m persuaded, by the skin of your teeth, that there is an alternative sentence to custody but it is a pretty significant one for you.”

Wade was ordered to carry out 200 hours unpaid work under a two-year community payback order, made the subject of a three-month tagging order confining him to his home from 7pm to 4.30am daily and banned from driving for two years.



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