A DRINK driver was found to be more than three times over the legal limit after driving back to his hotel from the pub, a court heard.

Mark Hazell, 51, of Whitchurch, Ross-on-Wye, was staying at a nearby Premier Inn following an argument with his mother.

He pleaded guilty to drink driving at Hereford Magistrates Court on Thursday.

Adrian Jones, prosecuting, said that just after 10pm on April 27, police were acting on information they had received and attended the Premier Inn in Ross-on-Wye.

"They made enquiries and the defendant was seen on CCTV driving a Jaguar motor vehicle outside the front of the hotel," said Mr Jones.

"Police went to his room and after knocking at the door a few times there was no answer so police officers used a master key card."

Hazell was found lying on the bed and admitted to have been drink driving.

At the police station he gave a reading of 121 microgrammes of alcohol in 100 millilitres of breath, above the legal limit of 35.

When interviewed the following day Hazell said he had drank four glasses of wine at the The Crown at Whitchurch before driving to the Premier Inn.

Chris Hilton, mitigating, said that Hazell had fully co-operated with police while somebody less honest might have said they drank after driving.

"When police did the road side test at the hotel he blew 106 so it had gone up over a passage of time," said Mr Hilton.

"When he was driving it would have been lower than 106 as the reading was going upwards.

"This is holy out of character, he is very remorseful and ashamed of what he did. Ordinarily he would do a lot of driving through his employment and will now have to stay in hotels.

"It will increase his expenses and he tends to send £3,000 a month to his daughter and wife in America. He plans in the near future to move to America so this sentence may impact on immigration matters.

"His mother who he is living with wanted some breathing space and ordinarily if he wanted a drink he would just have a short walk back to her house and wouldn't have to drive or arrange a taxi.

"This was an error of judgement."

Hazell was handed a 12-month community order including 150 hours of unpaid work.

He was disqualified from driving for 28 months which could be reduced by seven months on completion of a drink drive rehabilitation course.

He was also ordered to pay a £85 victim surcharge and £135 costs.