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A drink-driver kept his licence yesterday after magis- trates accepted that he had been fooled by "designer pop". York magistrates were told that Peter Kilner asked for soda water in a nightclub because he intended driving home at closing time. But staff gave him pints of the drink Decoda, an alcoholic soda water. Thinking he was fit to drive after four pints, Mr Kilner got into his car and drove three miles home before he was stopped by police.

Paul Williams, for the defence, said: "As he was the driver of the party he was purposely drinking pints of soda water to stay sober. But there was a misunderstanding between Mr Kilner and the barmaid who thought in the hubbub of the club he asked for Decoda ... He noticed nothing different in the taste, so had no way of knowing he was taking himself well over the limit."

The magistrates gave him an absolute discharge.