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Passenger in 'driverless' car charged for drunken driving

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08:25 CET+01:00
A 29-year-old man from northern Sweden has been charged with drunken driving despite not having been behind the wheel when officers stopped the vehicle.

The charges stem from an incident last autumn which began when a petrol station worker in Sundsvall called police to say that a clearly intoxicated man had gotten behind the wheel of a car and driven off, the local Dagbladet newspaper reports.

Out on the E4 motorway, the vehicle in question sped past the first patrol car it met. But when police caught up with the suspected drunken driver, they were startled to see that no one was in the driver's seat.

After proceeding about 200 metres without a driver, the car rolled to a stop and police approached the vehicle to find three men – one in the front seat and two, including the 29-year-old, in the back.

While all three men denied having driven the vehicle, police recognized the 29-year-old as having been behind the wheel when they first passed the car.

The local prosecutor also gave little credence to the man's ‘ghost-driver' defence, and has now charged the 29-year-old with driving without a licence, reckless driving, and drunken driving.

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