Comedian Omid Djalili fined £500 for speeding in Leicester after 'one of his best gigs'
Comedian and actor Omid Djalili was yesterday fined £500 after being caught speeding in Leicester after a stand-up gig in the city.
The 46-year-old comic, who already had 30 points on his driving licence, told Leicester Magistrates' Court how he must have committed the offence in Tigers Way after getting lost in roadworks following a performance at De Montfort Hall earlier in the evening.
Djalili said he was trying to get back to the Marriott Hotel, in Fosse Park, when he ended up going round in circles because of the roadworks.
Londoner Djalili said: "I was following the directions of the sat nav which at that point was going haywire."
Business Cards From Only £10.95 Delivered www.myprint-247.co.ukView details
Contact: 01858 468192
Valid until: Sunday, May 26 2013
He said he was so lost he stopped and eventually ended up following another driver who told him he could lead him to safety.
He said: "I just followed him in my car. I could not get out otherwise."
Djalili had been found guilty in his absence of speeding at 36mph in a 30mph zone on Tigers Way on November 19 last year.
Prosecutor John Kavanagh told the court that Djalili had been caught speeding in his Lexus by a speed camera at 10.38pm.
Djalili was represented in court by Nick Freeman, nicknamed "Mr Loophole" because he has successfully appeared on behalf of many celebrities and footballers on speeding and traffic charges.
Mr Freeman tried to persuade the court his client's offence fell into the category of special reasons.
He said: "The roadworks were particularly chaotic."
Mr Freeman told the court Djalili would not have committed the offence if it had not been for the bad roadworks and the fact that he was trying to concentrate on following another driver, who was probably speeding as he tried to lead him out of the confusion.
Mr Freeman said that Djajlili's driving licence was in a mess. He said Djalili had been disqualified from driving for six months for other offences, last week.
He said his client had managed to amass 30 points on his licence because he had moved and been unaware of motoring charges against him.
The court was not told how he had acquired the 30 points.
Djalili said he had to drive himself to gigs despite having a tour bus because he feels sick on the coach.
He said: "I am very upset that I have spent all this money and I don't travel on the tour bus.
"I am not going to spend any more money on taxis so I drive myself."
Chairman of the bench John Whiting said they did not find there were special reasons.
He gave Djalili three points on his licence and fined him £500 with £85 costs and a £15 victim surcharge.
After the hearing, Djalili said: "I am upset about this because it was one of the best gigs of my life.
"I want to take this opportunity to thank the good people of Leicester for that."
Djajlili has appeared in many TV shows, has a strong stand-up following and has also featured in a number of successful movies including Gladiator, Notting Hill and Pirates of the Caribbean: At World's End .