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PR guru Freud drove Ferrari through Devon at 117mph with son in car

By Western Morning News  |  Posted: November 16, 2012

A wealthy public relations expert drove through Devon at 117mph in a Ferrari with his five-year-old son asleep in the front seat.

Matthew Freud, head of international PR firm Freud Communications, had been driving home from a business trip to Cornwall when a police officer spotted him racing along the fast lane of the M5 in Devon.

Freud is the great-grandson of psychology pioneer Sigmund Freud and son of former MP and TV personality Clement Freud.

He is married to Rupert Murdoch's daughter Elisabeth and is a friend of Prime Minister David Cameron.

Yesterday, Exeter magistrates banned him from driving for six months and fined him £830.

The court heard Freud, 48, of Fitzroy Road, London, had borrowed the black Ferrari from a business associate – and he was not used to its power.

Prosecutor David Barnes told the court a speed detection device recorded the speed at 117mph on the 70mph M5 at Sampford Peverell on July 31, 2012.

Mr Barnes said the police stopped the Ferrari and Freud said the vehicle belonged to his business partner.

He said: "It appeared the defendant was in the company of his five-year-old son who was asleep in the front seat of the vehicle." Martin Bourne, defending, said Freud already had nine points on his licence in the last three years – two fixed penalties for speeding and one for using a mobile phone while driving.

He said: "He was driving back to his London home. He had been in Cornwall during the day for a business meeting. It was the school holidays and that is why his young son was with him. He was caring for his son as he went about his business."

He said he had borrowed the car and was not used to it or its speed when he put his foot on the accelerator and "did not keep an eye on the speed".

"He apologises for the offence. He accepts that it was a grossly excessive speed," said Mr Bourne.

Freud admitted speeding and the magistrates put six points on his licence making a total of 15 under totting up.

He was banned from driving for six months and ordered to pay £830 fine with £75 costs and victim surcharge.

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