‘Confused’ Blue star Lee Ryan tells court he has no money due to COVID and can’t pay driving fine

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Blue star Lee Ryan has told a court he has no money after being fined and banned from driving for failing to provide information about who was behind the wheel of his car.

The singer appeared at Peterborough Magistrates' Court via remote link from Spain on Thursday, where he was disqualified from driving for 12 months and fined £660.

But the 37-year-old said he was "out of work at the moment due to COVID", after being ordered to pay £1,501 in total, including court costs.

"I just don't have any money," he told the court.

He was charged with driving a Mercedes at 70mph in a 60mph limit on an A-road in Peterborough, Fletton Parkway, on 8 August last year, and driving a Mercedes at 71mph on the same road on 22 August last year.

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Those charges were dismissed because the prosecution offered no evidence due to there being no means of proving who was driving.

But the All Rise singer went on trial for two counts of failing to give information relating to the identification of the driver when required, and was found guilty by magistrates.

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And after insisting during the hearing that he had sent off the required information, he was told that if the money is not paid he can be brought back to court and could find himself in prison.

Ryan told the court that his girlfriend, Verity Morley, had the use of his vehicle "because she was going up and down the country in the car with her job".

"I gave her my car because I thought it was safer than her own," he said.

Alison Marsh, presiding justice, said it was accepted that Ryan was the owner of a Mercedes in August and September last year and that he did not advise the DVLA of changes of address in 2020.

"It is disputed that you responded to the request for details of the driver speeding on the 8th of August and the 22nd of August 2020," she said, adding: "The defendant agreed that he had not advised the DVLA of his changes of address in 2020, which is a legal requirement.

"We feel he has confused Verity's speeding in his car on the 5th September 20, which she received points in March this year, with these offences, and we conclude he has failed to provide information relating to the driver's identity on the 8th August and the 22nd August 20 as legally required to do."

She said she accepted it may not have been a "deliberate act", but said the legal requirement that the DVLA has a correct and up-to-date address for you applies to everyone.

"We therefore find you guilty," she told him.

Mrs Marsh gave Ryan two lots of six points against his licence, which means he is disqualified from driving for 12 months.

Regarding the fine, she said magistrates took into account the fact the music industry has been "severely hit" by the pandemic, and decided to charge him for one offence.

After she listed the £660 fine, £66 victim surcharge and £775 prosecution costs, Ryan said: "I just don't have any money.

"I'm not working. I mean, they've stopped the gigs. I don't have any gigs. They've stopped everything because of the pandemic.

"There's still no shows going on."

It was put to Ryan that there are shows going on in the UK, but he said: "I've not got anything. I haven't got anything."

Asked if it would be unreasonable to think he may have some savings, he said: "No, I spent them all in COVID."

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