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Guy Ritchie banned from driving for six months as cyclist catches him texting

Guy Ritchie was banned from driving this week after caught texting behind the wheel (Picture: Northcliffe Collection)

Guy Ritchie has been banned from driving for six months, after a cyclist caught the Hollywood director texting while behind the wheel of his Range Rover, filming the incident and handing it over to police.

The 51-year-old was also given six points on his licence, taking the total to 15, and ordered to pay a £666 fine, as well as £166 in prosecution costs and court fees, according to the Evening Standard.

He was not required to appear at Bromley Magistrates Court on Tuesday, where he was handed down the punishment.

Ritchie, whose films also include The Gentlemen, Snatch and Lock, Stock And Two Smoking Barrels, was seen by cyclist Mike van Erp typing a message on his iPhone as he drove through Hyde Park in November last year.

Mr van Erp alerted the Met and sent in a video file, called ‘Man typing on his mobile phone whilst behind the wheel of his car’, after having a short exchange with Ritchie before the director drove away.

The incident happened at about 1pm on 3 November 2019, with Ritchie seen sitting in his car, with Apple earbuds in, waiting at traffic backed-up through the park.

Guy pleaded guilty in writing (Picture: WireImage)

After realising the cyclist had pulled up alongside him, Ritchie wound down the driver’s window and said: ‘Hello my friend.’

Mr van Erp is heard replying: ‘I don’t think you should be using your text messages while you are driving. I saw you doing it back there as well.’

Following the incident, according to reports, Ritchie told police he was the driver in the video and was then told he would be prosecuted.

In a statement, Mr van Erp said: ‘I spotted this driver texting on his phone. I stopped and whilst waiting for traffic to clear could clearly see the driver typing on his phone. I then crossed to the driver’s side where I saw his iPhone lit up with the classic blue and grey message bubbles of Apple iMessage, with text, and a message in process of being typed but not sent.’

Court papers show Ritchie had nine points on his driving licence, which were due to three previous speeding offences in March 2017, and February and December 2019.

To avoid a full court hearing, Ritchie’s case was dealt with behind closed doors under the Single Justice Procedure, with a court official and a magistrate assessing the papers. Ritchie pleaded guilty in writing to using a handheld mobile phone/device while driving a motor vehicle on a road, giving his £6million Georgian townhouse in central London as his address to the court.

Metro.co.uk contacted Ritchie’s reps for comment.


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