One of the key organizers of Queen Elizabeth II's state funeral has had to give up his driver's license for six months. The Duke of Norfolk, Edward Fitzalan-Howard, pleaded guilty to using his mobile phone while driving in a London court on Monday, the PA news agency reported.
Police caught the 65-year-old in April driving through a red light in the Battersea district of London. He didn't even notice this because he was concentrating on his cell phone, the accused said in court. The Duke of Norfolk had been noticed in the past for speeding and scored a number of points.
Fitzalan-Howard, who is also a member of the British House of Lords, had tried to prevent his driver's license from being handed over - on the grounds that he needed it to organize the coronation of King Charles III. An exact date for this ceremony is not yet publicly known, but the coming spring or early summer is considered a likely period.
However, the court did not recognize the extraordinary circumstances as so significant that the duke was spared the penalty. In addition to the driving ban, he has to pay a fine of around 1,200 pounds.