British pop star Sarah Harding has been banned from driving for six months after pleading guilty to using her cell phone while behind the wheel.
The Girls Aloud star was arrested earlier this month (Apr13) after a police officer spotted her chatting on her phone while driving through London.
She was charged with using her mobile device while driving and failing to stop for police. Harding pleaded guilty to the first offence but the second charge was dropped after her lawyer told the hearing it was too dangerous for the star to pull her vehicle over when she was ordered to.
The 31 year old appeared at Highbury Corner Magistrates' Court in London on Tuesday (16Apr13) and was disqualified from driving for six months as the offence took her over the maximum number of penalty points on her licence.
Judge Nina Tempia handed out the sentence after Harding's lawyer Nick Freeman failed to convince her to be lenient due to his client's celebrity status.
The judge said, "As Mr Freeman has said, he is asking the court to deal with you (Harding) as opposed to a normal person. Well, you are a normal person. I can see no reason why you shouldn't be disqualified."
When Freeman pointed out the singer would struggle to travel on public transport due to her fame, Judge Tempia told Harding, 'I'm not thinking of public transport - I'm thinking of paying somebody to drive you."
The star was also ordered to pay a fine of $800 (£500), a $32 (£20) surcharge, and $136 (£85) in prosecution costs.