A PUB DJ was caught almost twice the drink-drive limit when he was taking an epileptic friend home, a court was told.

Mark Fitzsimmons, 39, who was subject to a suspended jail term at the time, had got behind the wheel because his friend was unwell and the wait for a taxi was too long.

Fitzsimmons gave a test which showed 67 micrograms of alcohol in 100 millilitres of breath – the legal limit is 35 – Burnley magistrates heard.

The defendant, of Lloyd Close, Nelson, admitted driving with excess alcohol, last December 21.

He was spared prison after the bench told him it would be unjust to activate the suspended term as he had fully complied with other parts of it and it was almost at an end. Fitzsimmons was fined a total of £300, with a £25 victim surcharge and he was banned for 17 months. He must pay £85 costs.

The court heard the defendant, a stores team leader who worked part-time at the George and Dragon, Barrowford, as a DJ, had been there with his friend.

He tried to get a taxi but was told they would have to wait about 45 minutes, and ‘foolishly decided’ to take the risk to get his friend home as fast as he could.