Solicitor's curfew relaxed so that he can go sunbathing in France
A solicitor who narrowly escaped jail has had a strict curfew relaxed by a court so he can go sunbathing in the south of France.Michael Passmore of Colchester, Essex claimed he needed the sunshine break on the French Riviera in order to boost his body's vitamin D.
A crown court has now agreed to give Passmore the green-light for his getaway.
Passmore originally found himself in hot water when he was stopped by police after sinking five drinks at a pub before trying to get behind the wheel of his car.
The 58-year-old was four times over the drink-drive limit.
He then fled the country to Sri Lanka before his court appearance and was arrested six months later upon his return where he was handed a 12-week suspended sentence of drink-driving along with a four-week suspended term for failing to attend court.
In August this year magistrates placed the former solicitor on a strict curfew which keeps him at home every night.
A recorder at Chelmsford Crown Court has now agreed to overturn the restrictions of the curfew.
Nneka Akuddlu, representing Passmore, said her client had skin condition which would benefit from him spending time in the sunshine.
She said: "Although doctors have told him they can prescribe creams, he has been told the best source of treatment would be vitamin D.
"He would like to visit a good friend in the south of France so that the climate there can assist with his condition."
Miss Akuddlu told the court the condition was known as lichen planus which causes itchy rashes on the skin.
Recorder Neil Graham QC, who heard the appeal at Chelmsford Crown Court, agreed to relax the curfew so that Passmore could head abroad.
However, he restricted the relaxation of the curfew to seven days.
The court heard that Passmore also wanted to visit his sister, who is suffering from cancer, in Easbourne.
Miss Akuddlu said her client had imposed a driving ban upon himself since fleeing the country.