Ant’s guilt

I’ve let my­self down and I’m truly sorry. I’d like to apol­o­gise to ev­ery­body ...and I’m just thank­ful no one was se­ri­ously hurt

Daily Mirror - - FRONT PAGE - BY TOM PET­TI­FOR Chief Crime Cor­re­spon­dent­ti­for@mir­

Star’s record £86,000 fine af­ter drink-drive crash

ANT Mc­Partlin has been sen­tenced for his “mor­ti­fy­ing” al­co­hol-fu­elled car crash, in which a ter­ri­fied child told his mother: “I’m dy­ing.”

The TV pre­sen­ter, 42, was yes­ter­day fined £86,000, be­lieved to be a record for a drink-driv­ing of­fence.

Mag­is­trates heard Mc­Partlin had been more than twice the limit when he took a cor­ner “like a rocket” and swerved into two cars car­ry­ing young chil­dren.

The driver of the first ve­hi­cle he hit said his fam­ily feared for their lives.

Mc­Partlin then col­lided head-on with a BMW, driven by a doc­tor and her son, nine.

The driver, named only Dr Ng, said she in­stantly looked at the boy, who said: “I’m dy­ing, Mummy, I’m dy­ing.”

She added in a state­ment: “I saw he was phys­i­cally fine with no ma­jor in­juries, but in shock. He de­scribed how the car was com­ing around the cor­ner ‘like a rocket’.” Speak­ing on the court steps fol­low­ing sen­tenc­ing, Mc­Partlin said: “I just want to say I’m truly sorry for what hap­pened.

“High stan­dards are ex­pected of me, I ex­pect them of my­self. I’ve let my­self down, I let a lot of peo­ple down.

“I’d like apol­o­gise to ev­ery­body in­volved in the crash and I’m just thank­ful no one was se­ri­ously hurt.”

The Satur­day Night Take­away host had been drink­ing with­out telling his mum, Christine Wood­hall, who was in the pas­sen­ger seat at the time of the crash in Rich­mond, South West Lon­don. Prose­cu­tor Katie Sin­nett-Jones told Wim­ble­don mag­is­trates court that Mc­Partlin’s black Mini was a write-off af­ter the star lost con­trol as he drove around a sharp bend at “con­sid­er­able speed” on March 18.

He hit Fa­heen Vanoo’s Mini Cooper be­fore driv­ing “straight into the front of an on­com­ing car”, Dr Ng’s BMW.

Sev­eral peo­ple were treated at the scene for mi­nor in­juries. Days later, Mc­Partlin told po­lice: “I am ashamed and mor­ti­fied. I ac­cept full cul­pa­bil­ity.”

Dr Ng said: “I’m hor­ri­fied some­one can drive so dan­ger­ously. I gen­uinely thought the driver of the black Mini had died.” Mr Vanoo’s state­ment said: “My­self and my fam­ily were in deep shock as we be­lieved we could have died.” Wear­ing a black three-piece suit and tie Mc­Partlin, of Chiswick, West Lon­don, lis­tened in­tently and nod­ded in the dock as the case against him was out­lined.

He spoke only to say “guilty” in a low voice and con­firm his per­sonal de­tails.

Is­su­ing the fine and a 20-month road ban, District Judge Bar­bara Barnes said his crime was ag­gra­vated by the fact he drank so much then put oth­ers at risk.

She told the £130,000-a-week en­ter­tainer he had “let down so many peo­ple”, adding: “I think it will have quite an im­pact on you to know you are no longer a man of good char­ac­ter.”

Mc­Partlin’s so­lic­i­tor Liam Walker said he had a “brief re­lapse un­be­knownst to his pas­sen­ger”. He said his client had strug­gled as his 11-year re­la­tion­ship – with TV make-up artist Lisa Arm­strong – broke down and was get­ting treat­ment for “al­co­hol and emo­tional is­sues”.

He added: “He’s do­ing ev­ery­thing he can so this never hap­pens again.” Mc­Partlin’s fine eclipses the £54,000 im­posed on Manch­ester City’s Yaya Toure in 2016 for drink-driv­ing, re­ported at the time as the big­gest sanc­tion of its kind in the UK.

I have let my­self and a lot of peo­ple down, I’m truly sorry ANT MC­PARTLIN AF­TER SEN­TENC­ING YES­TER­DAY

PAINED Mc­Partlin at court yes­ter­day

GUILTY TV’s Ant Mc­Partlin yes­ter­day Pic­ture: ADAM GER­RARD COURT Sketch of Ant in dock WRITE-OFF Ant gets out of wrecked Mini SHAME How we told of crash

APOL­OGY Ant leaves court in Wim­ble­don af­ter sen­tence

SHOCK Driver Fa­heem Vanoo and fam­ily

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