Brendan Coyle hit with driving ban for boozy drive

'Downton Abbey's Brendan Coyle was found guilty of drink-driving when he appeared in court yesterday

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Brendan Coyle

Brendan Coyle

'Downton Abbey's Brendan Coyle has been slapped with a four-year driving ban after he was found guilty of drink-driving.

The 52-year-old actor - who was known for playing valet Mr Bates in the popular period drama - was dished out the punishment when he appeared in court yesterday (10.02.16) after he was caught behind the wheel of his BMW convertible while three times over the alcohol limit in Norfolk in January.

The 'Noble' star was also hit with 12 months community service, ordered to do 100 hours of unpaid work, told to complete 15 days rehabilitation, and pushed to cough up £85 in court fees and a victim surcharge for his boozy crime.

The judge heard that Brendan - who appeared in court under his real name David Coyle - had hit the bottle hard on board a flight back from Thailand, where he had spent the month of December in rehab, before he jumped into his plush vehicle and headed down the A149 near King's Lynn, Norfolk, at 8.30pm on New Year's Day (01.01.16).

The actor was pulled over and failed a roadside breath test, before he was taken to a local police station for a further test, which proved he had 98 mcg of alcohol in 100 ml of breath.

Meanwhile, this isn't the first time Brendan - who is described as having a "significant" alcohol problem - has been convicted of drink-driving as he also committed the crime in 2011.

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