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For Jonas Valanciunas of Toronto Raptors fame, a delay in his case for drinking and driving may give him more time to defend his case. Yet should he be convicted of driving over 80 it could have very serious consequences for his career. There is, of course, no guarantee that he will be convicted, but the risk of conviction should be enough to cause significant concern.
According to reports, the 21-year-old basketball star was driving in Wasaga Beach when he went through a drive-thru window for a restaurant. In his car were open beer bottles. It is not entirely clear, however, how he was then stopped by Huronia West Ontario Provincial Police, but he has since been charged with driving over 80.
Though it is unknown if Valanciunas will be found guilty, he and his criminal defence lawyer will want to talk about the various consequences that could come with a conviction. As a professional basketball player, he needs to be able to travel quite frequently, which includes travel to the U.S. Individuals convicted of driving while intoxicated could face difficulties when trying to cross the border.
Moreover, if he is required to attend treatment programs or alcohol rehabilitation, he may miss practices, games or other functions required of him as a player on the Raptors. Finally, as a Lithuanian national, a conviction could impact his immigration status.
Though some people assume that the punishment for driving over 80 is relatively minor, the consequences associated with a conviction could have disastrous effects on a person’s career, immigration status or ability to travel.
Source: The Barrie Examiner, “Raptor drunk driving case adjourned until May,” April 22, 2014