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Saido Berahino: Ex-West Brom star facing drink-drive trial 'after fleeing robbery'

By Andrew Turton | Cannock | Crime | Published:

Former West Brom footballer Saido Berahino will face trial for drink-driving in London's West End after claiming he was fleeing a gang of armed robbers.

Saido Berahino arriving at court today

The 25-year-old was arrested in Bedford Square in the early hours of February 18 after reports of a "disturbance" in nearby Great Russell Street.

The Burundi-born striker, of Old Penkridge Road, Cannock, appeared at Highbury Corner Magistrates' Court on Wednesday charged with one count of drink-driving.

Mr Jake Taylor, for Berahino, said that just before his arrest at around 3am, the footballer had been threatened by armed robbers and a number of items had been taken.

WATCH: Berahino arriving at court (Advisory: strong language)

Footage: @jendougallsky

Mr Taylor said the player had driven "a very short distance" in his Range Rover over a period of about 15 seconds.

He said the issue in the case was "duress of circumstance", and that there would be no expert evidence in relation to the breathalyser reading.

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Berahino, who now plays for Stoke City, was almost three times the drink-drive limit, with 103mg of alcohol in 100ml of breath. The legal limit is 35mg.

The Met Police previously said an investigation into the alleged robbery was continuing and no arrests had been made.

Berahino spoke in court only to give his name, address and to give his nationality as British.

Judge Nicholas Rimmer granted him unconditional bail until his trial on May 15.

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Stoke City have not commented on the player's arrest but it is understood he will be dealt with internally under the Championship club's disciplinary policy.

The defendant joined the club in January 2017 having started his career with West Bromwich Albion, and also plays for Burundi's international side.

Andrew Turton

By Andrew Turton
Digital Journalist

Digital journalist based at the Express & Star's head office in Wolverhampton. Interested in breaking news and social media. Get in touch on Twitter @aturton_star or andrew.turton@expressandstar.co.uk

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