Court cancels driving licence of woman, 81, for speeding

Judith Slade, from Heathcote in Victoria, pleaded guilty before the Bendigo Magistrate's Court to driving at a dangerous speed and failing to obey her licence conditions.

Magistrate William O'Day convicted and fined Slade $850. He also cancelled her licence and disqualified her from getting a licence for 12 months, The Age reported on Wednesday.

Slade was detected travelling at 164kmph on the Murray Valley Highway near Lake Boga earlier this year. Police chased her but she ignored their lights and sirens for four kilometres. When pulled over, Slade told police she thought they were an oversized vehicle.

Prosecutor Senior Constable Tony Graham told the court that the licensing authority had prohibited Slade from driving more than 30 km from her home. But, at the time of the offence she was travelling from Mildura to Heathcote after visiting a friend. Mildura is more than 400 km from Heathcote.

Defence lawyer Peter Baker said Slade, a retired shearer, had held a licence for more than 60 years and this was her first speeding offence.

"She's aware there is no excuse, but a licence cancellation will cause her significant hardship," Baker said.

Slade, who suffers from arthritis, is unable to walk long distances and will struggle to leave her house without a licence, the court heard.

Baker said: "She is certainly remorseful and has asked me to apologise to the court for her behaviour."

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