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Driving ban for Beckham

Photo: Getty Images

David Beckham has been disqualified from driving for six months for using his mobile phone while at the wheel.

The ex-footballer, 43, was spotted by a member of the public using his phone while driving in Great Portland Street, on 21 November last year.

He pleaded guilty.

The ban came as he was given six points on his licence, which took his total to 12. He had six from previous speeding offences. He was also fined £750 and ordered to pay £100 costs and a £75 surcharge fee.

He stood in Bromley Magistrates Court to say his full name, date of birth and west London address.

Prosecutor Matthew Spratt said Beckham was photographed by a member of the public in "slowly moving traffic" using his phone.

He said: "Instead of looking straight forward, paying attention to the road, he appeared to be looking at his lap.

"[The witness] says that the defendant was operating a handheld device at knee level. At that moment a photograph was taken.

"The defendant was holding the mobile phone in the upright position."

Mitigating, Gerrard Tyrell said Beckham has "no recollection of the day in question or this particular incident".

He said: "There is no excuse for what took place but his view is as he cannot remember... he's going to plead guilty and that's what he's done."

Beckham was originally to be dealt with using the new single justice procedure, an administrative process not open to the press or public.

But the hearing was adjourned at Bromley Magistrates Court to today, to "show cause".

A member of court staff, speaking after the last hearing, explained: "The magistrates requested more information - either the circumstances in which it happened or they think they don't have enough information about the charge to make an informed decision."

Beckham sent his guilty plea in by post under SJP, which is intended to free up court time by allowing magistrates to deal with low-level offences that do not warrant a prison sentence quickly.

Two months before he reported for this offence the father-of-four was criticised for avoiding prosecution for a speeding charge because he received the notice for intended prosecution one day after the statutory 14 day limit.

He previously used celebrity lawyer Nick Freeman who is dubbed "Mr Loophole" to avoid the last prosecution.

Mr Freeman also helped Beckham overturn an eight-month driving ban in 1999 after arguing the then footballer was trying to escape paparazzi.

Sky News

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