London

Rugby star Danny Cipriani cried as he was arrested

Danny Cipriani Image copyright Chris Brunskill/Getty Images
Image caption Danny Cipriani has denied drink-driving in Fulham, west London

England rugby star Danny Cipriani was "tearful and upset" after he was arrested on suspicion of drink-driving, a court has heard.

Police Sgt Nicholas Peacock told Mr Cipriani's trial he "appeared to be drunk" when he was brought into Hammersmith police station last June.

He was breathalysed and found to be nearly twice the drink-drive limit in June last year, his trial heard.

The 28-year-old's defence have argued the case should be thrown out.

They told Westminster Magistrates' Court there was a "lack of evidence" against the Sale Sharks star, who denies drink-driving in Fulham, west London.

Sgt Peacock told the court Mr Cipriani's eyes were glazed and "he smelt of intoxicating liquor, appeared to be drunk to me, and was upset and tearful."

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The court previously heard claims police gave Mr Cipriani special treatment and delayed breathalysing him in a move the rugby player believed was "calculated to assist him".

Mr Cipriani was breathalysed after crashing his Mercedes into a taxi and found to have 67 micrograms of alcohol per 100ml of breath - nearly twice the drink-drive limit in England and Wales of 35 micrograms.

But Sgt Peacock said delays are common, particularly at shift changeover, as was the case when Mr Cipriani was brought in.

He also said the sports star was kept outside in a part of the station precinct known as "the cage" in order to stop other detainees recognising him.

"The concern is that if you have a well-known person and they are seen by other people, that information can potentially be leaked to the press," he said.

Philip Lucas, defending, told the court there was not "sufficient" evidence the breathalyser test in the police station was working properly and called for the case to be dismissed.

The move came after the prosecutor and district judge raised concerns that legal proceedings were being "filibustered" and the case "derailed" by "unnecessarily complicated" legal submissions made by Mr Lucas.

The case was adjourned until Friday.

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