A MAGISTRATE has warned a Horsham man that he could face jail time if he continues to drive under the influence of drugs.
Damon Brennan, 22, appeared at Horsham Magistrates' Court on Monday and represented himself. He pleaded guilty to driving while unlicensed and driving under the influence of drugs.
He received a fine and was disqualified from driving for 12 months.
The court heard police intercepted Mr Brennan on Mill Street, Horsham on May 8, 2018 at 8.30pm for a routine check.
Prosecutor Senior Constable Michelle Wentworth said police discovered Brennan did not have a valid driver's licence.
"The licence had been cancelled and was not reissued. However, he was not exempt from holding a licence. Police undertook a oral fluid test which returned a positive result for illicit drugs," she said.
"The accused was taken to Horsham Police Station where a further test indicated the presence of drugs."
The accused's reason to police was that he "honestly didn't think (he) had anything in (his) system" and that there had been a "misunderstanding" with his licence expiring.
"I know I have f**ked up before, but I didn't know I had any cannabis in my system. I smoked it on Saturday and was driving on Monday," Brennan told Magistrate Ronald Saines.
"I would have gone to VicRoads to get my licence back if I knew I was disqualified."
The court heard that Brennan was disqualified from driving in 2017 after he was charged with a drink driving offence.
Mr Saines said he had "some serious doubt" as to how truthful Brennan was regarding his licence being suspended.
"This is the fourth time since 2016 that you have been to court in relation to drink or drug driving offences. This offending is punishable by imprisonment," he said.
"On this occasion, you were found with cannabis in your system and it remains in your system for a number of days. If you appear a fifth time, I would expect a prison sentence."
Brennan was fined $1600 plus court costs and was disqualified from driving for 12 months.
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