Tue Jul 15, 10:51 AM
SYDNEY (Reuters) - An Australian man convicted of his seventh drink-driving charge was spending about A$1,000 ($972) a week on beer -- enough to buy more than 2,500 small bottles a month, a newspaper said Tuesday.
The heartbroken construction worker began drowning his sorrows after breaking up with his partner five years ago, the Northern Territory News said, quoting his defense lawyer as telling a court in Australia's remote, tropical north.
The magistrate declined to jail the father of four, Michael Leary, noting he had quit drinking since his latest arrest, but he banned Leary from buying or even holding a beer for 12 months.
The magistrate also poked fun at Leary's favorite beer, Melbourne Bitter, in a part of the country where drinkers can be as loyal to beer brands as they are to football teams.
"(That is) poor judgment on two counts there -- drinking that much and drinking Melbourne Bitter," magistrate Vince Luppino was quoted as saying.