8 November 2023

Man allegedly caught drink driving twice in 24 hours was celebrating festival

| Albert McKnight
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horse park drive sign

Indra Lama, 33, allegedly delivered a high-range reading for alcohol after driving on Horse Park Drive. Photo: Google Maps.

An alleged drink driver accused of delivering high range readings – which were over six times the legal limit – twice in 24 hours had been celebrating a Nepalese festival.

Indra Lama, a 33-year-old from Amaroo, was refused bail when he appeared in the ACT Magistrates Court on Wednesday (8 November) to face his charges over the allegations.

Police were patrolling his home suburb around 9:30 pm on Monday (6 November) when they spotted a Toyota Camry veering between lanes, nearly hitting another vehicle, before mounting the median strip on Horse Park Drive, it is alleged in court documents.

The officers approached the driver, Lama, and he allegedly provided them with a disqualified driver’s licence.

He was taken to a police station and allegedly returned a breath alcohol analysis of 0.301 grams of alcohol, which was more than six times the legal limit.

He was served an immediate suspension notice, suspending his right to drive for 90 days.

“The defendant stated he had consumed two or three bottles of Yellow Tail white wine whilst at home and was driving back from Cellarbrations in Gungahlin to his residence in Amaroo,” police claim in the documents.

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Police were then called to Gungahlin Drive in Gungahlin around 2:15 pm on Tuesday (7 November) after receiving reports that a Camry had been allegedly swerving across lanes before pulling over.

Police officers arrived to find Lama with bottles of wine in the front of his car.

He was taken to a police station again, and this time, he allegedly returned a breath alcohol analysis of 0.345 grams of alcohol – which was almost seven times the legal limit.

“The defendant had zero passengers in the vehicle when stopped by police and was so incoherent [he] could not tell police where he was travelling,” the documents claim.

Lama was charged with two counts each of drink driving and driving while disqualified, as well as one count of driving while suspended.

He applied for bail on Wednesday, although that was opposed by the prosecutor.

His lawyer said he had been drinking as he had been celebrating a Nepalese festival.

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She also said he works part-time as a painter and she argued bail conditions could ameliorate any risks if he were released, such as handing in his car keys.

But Magistrate James Lawton said Lama was on bail in NSW, ordered not to drive and he had no confidence bail conditions could ameliorate risks.

Lama was remanded in custody, and the matter was adjourned until 23 November. No pleas were entered.

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Capital Retro10:14 pm 08 Nov 23

There are no “festivals” listed in Nepal at this time.


I thought RiotACT had made a mistake. Did they really report “ …was refused bail.”?

So we actually have an ACT Magistrate with a backbone and concern for the community.

Well done Magistrate James Lawton.

If he had have mugged a grannie, dealt drugs outside a school and stolen two cars, one of them being for a special needs family, he would have been bailed each time

agree and hope this person gets a really long gaol sentence

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