Sunderland AFC central defender, Anton Ferdinand, 25, has been banned from driving for six months today after the player was caught talking on his mobile phone at the wheel of his Range Rover on Newcastle-upon-Tyne’s central motorway on the morning of 13 July 2010.
The player, who appeared in a Newcastle magistrates court today for sentencing, already had 12 penalty points on his driving licence hence the six month ban which resulted under the “totting up” procedure.
Ferdinand had been stopped after police followed his white Range Rover vehicle for five minutes while the player talked on his mobile phone to his mother. Ferdinand said the conversation was an “important” private issue, but was not an emergency.
A warrant for Ferdinand’s arrest has been issued after the player failed to appear for the first hearing of the case – which his solicitor, Anthony Senior, said was as a result of the address on his driving licence being different from that at which the player currently resides.
The court heard how the ban from driving would inhibit Ferdinand’s charity work – something which, it was claimed, Ferdinand had been doing in London when news arrived of the warrant for his arrest.
Ferdinand was fined a total of £1,000, ordered to pay £85 costs and a £15 victim surcharge, as well as receiving the six month driving ban.