Serial drink driver’s bail refused to protect public

A MAGISTRATE has refused a serial drink driver bail for the protection of the public. 

Magistrate Roger Prowse was astounded after Graham Andrew Cluff was granted bail by police despite multiple drink-driving offences to his name.

Cluff drove to Tamworth from Barraba despite being under the influence and more than three times the legal limit before he was stopped by police.

He failed a roadside breath test before he returned a high-range blood alcohol reading.

Solicitor Fiona Hadlington said “quite clearly there is a significant issue.”

“This is number six,” she said in reference to PCA offences.

“This many PCAs in this short period of time then clearly there are some intensive corrections are needed.”

After Cluff pleaded guilty to the charge, Magistrate Prowse said he was preparing to reject bail because of the seriousness of the offence and prior history.

Ms Hadlington submitted that “there is a real problem going on here,” and conceded the safety and protection of the community is paramount.

She argued her client, who resides in Barraba, could comply with conditions not to occupy the front seats of a motor vehicle.

But it wasn’t enough.

“You clearly need significant, serious long lasting intervention,” Magistrate Prowse told the court. “For public safety and the  prevention of other offences, bail is refused.”

Cluff waved goodbye to supporters in court before he was led off by Corrective Service personnel.

He will remain in custody until he is sentenced at the end of May.

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