That I knew him was clear to me but I just couldn't place his face. Clearly, he recognised me as well and seemed equally baffled, raising nothing more than a tentative smile of recognition. This was at 08:25.
At 12:20, the same chap was brought up from the cells, charged with two counts of driving whilst disqualified. It seems that the Police were wanting to talk to him about a drive whilst disqualified when, mirabile dictu, he was spotted by a patrol car in the City centre just getting out of a car, from the driver's seat, in an outside car park. He was immediately arrested, charged and brought to Court.
Upon being asked by our Legal Advisor (Court Clerk), he pleaded not guilty to two charges of disqualified driving, one of which was when he was arrested this morning. I then leaned across to the Legal Advisor and told him that I'd seen the defendant driving earlier in the day before he was arrested.
His brief overheard me and before I'd completed my discussion with the legal advisor, he'd gone to the dock and made a comment to his client who looked up sharply at me and suddenly the penny dropped, as did his chin
I had intended to communicate to the prosecutor, via the Legal Advisor, that I was a potential witness in any upcoming trial but in the event didn't have to do so as the brief asked for the offences to be put again at which his client pleaded guilty to both... somewhat grumpily, it has to be said.
His previous convictions were handed to the Bench, six of which pertained to exactly the same offence so we were able to dispatch him forthwith for a twelvemonth at Her Majesty's hotel. His latest disqualification was only seven weeks old. We added a further 18 months disqualification, consecutive, for each offence, and a deprivation order for his car, which will either be auctioned or crushed.
Oh, and the cheeky bar steward asked for his sentence to be deferred as he had a two-week holiday to Crete in May booked and paid for.