Boy racer arrested driving minutes into ban
Boy racer Charles Watts appeared before Basildon Magistrates' Court after being caught doing 67mph in a 40mph zone in a crackdown on street-racing around Essex's Lakeside shopping centre.
Despite walking out of court with a nine-month disqualification, Watts soon found himself in handcuffs after he drove away from court.
He now faces fresh charges of driving whilst disqualified and driving with no insurance.
Watts was disqualified after having his licence endorsed with six penalty points for the speeding offence – taking him up to 12 and an automatic ban under the 'totting-up' system.
He claimed he couldn't pay the £183 fine the court also imposed after stating he had only £1 to his name.
The 24-year-old was one of 17 motorists brought before the court for a variety of driving offences, the majority of which occurred on a 40mph stretch of dual carriageway near the shopping centre.
He will return to Basildon Magistrates' Court on October 17 to enter a plea to the new charges.
Chief Inspector Ben Hodder, who led the blitz on the boy racers, took to Twitter to express his disbelief at Watts' actions: "Someone who was disqualified from driving at court today #OpWagtail decided to ignore the court and try and drive anyway! #arrested."
The crackdown, dubbed 'Operation Wagtail' has seen the number of road racers using the area drop significantly.
Sgt Willsher, one of the officers involved, said: "It's good so many boy racers have been brought to court because it means we can deal with the issue but at the same time I wish we didn't have any of them up at all because that would mean we don't have a problem in the first place," reported the Daily Mail.
"We have this issue with cruising all over the county but we are prioritising Lakeside because of the extra danger of all the pedestrians who line up to watch.
"In any other situation many of these people would have been offered speed awareness courses, but we are concerned about how dangerous these drivers are as much as their speed."