A former soldier’s ‘fragile mental health’ led to a drug-drive conviction.

Robert Watson, of The Rise, Redburth, Tenby, pleaded guilty to driving while over the controlled drug limit when he appeared before Haverfordwest magistrates on Tuesday, February 26.

The court heard that officers stopped Watson’s Nissan Qashqai on Honeyborough Road, Neyland, on November 30. A drug swipe taken at the scene was positive, and he was found to have benzoylecgonine in his system.

Sian Vaughan, prosecuting, said Watson, 32, had a previous conviction for a drink-driving within the last ten years.

Jonathan Webb, defending, said: “The taking of cocaine was futile attempt to end his own life following a split from his long term partner.

“They are now back together, but Mr Watson went off the rails at that time.”

Mr Webb added that Watson, who had been discharged from the army on medical grounds after serving his country, had suffered from ‘fragile mental health’.”

The bench was told that the cocaine was not taken immediately before driving, but an enzyme appeared in the liver some time afterwards.

“He was not necessarily under the influence when diving, but it remains in your blood.”

Magistrates banned Watson from driving for three years and fined him £80. He was ordered to pay £85 court costs and a £30 surcharge.