A CANBERRA man described by a magistrate as having “a continuing attitude of irresponsibility on the roads” has lodged an appeal against a four-month jail term imposed for driving at 235km/h.
John David Large, 31, of Chisholm, appeared in Albury Local Court yesterday for sentence on a charge of driving at a dangerous speed on the Hume Highway about 1.30pm on May 7 this year.
His high-performance six-litre V8 Holden HSV utility with registration plates OFFTAP was checked on police radar near Holbrook as Large was making his way to Melbourne for a family 60th birthday party.
When stopped by police who asked about his excessive speed, he said: “I know, I know. You wouldn’t believe it.
“I was sitting on 115km/h all the way. I saw a straight stretch of road and thought I would give it a blast.”
Large, who owns his own business as a delivery driver for a Canberra furniture and electrical franchise, travels about 80,000km each year, but conceded through his solicitor that he would lose his licence.
Solicitor Andrea MacDonald said Large had travelled at the excessive speed for about 10 seconds.
“It was quite simply a spur of the moment thing. It was a stupid, impulsive act,” Ms MacDonald said.
“He understands that he must pay and pay dearly.”
But it was suggested by Ms MacDonald that a suspended jail sentence could be imposed.
Magistrate Gordon Lerve said Large’s driving happened on statistically Australia’s busiest road and there was extreme potential risk to himself and other road users.
“That speed in itself is very, very dangerous,” Mr Lerve said.
“It would have taken so very little for there to be a catastrophe at least as far as the offender is concerned.”
Mr Lerve said Large had drink-driving matters in the ACT in 1999 and 2000, received a 12-month suspended sentence for high-range drink-driving and dangerous driving in 2001 and appeared in court in 2007 for doing a burnout.
He had 12 traffic infringement notices in the ACT between 2006 and last year.
“His record demonstrates irresponsibility as far as the traffic laws are concerned,” Mr Lerve said.
He described the driving as grossly dangerous, saying there was a need for deterrence when imposing the jail term and a four-year disqualification.
Large lodged a severity appeal, was released on $2000 bail with a condition banning him from occupying the driver’s seat of any vehicle and has to appear in the District Court at Albury on a date to be fixed.