A Scottish Conservative councillor is to go on trial next year after she denied driving under the influence of alcohol and while her car was uninsured.
Audrey Coates, who has been suspended by the party, pled not guilty by letter on Friday and a trial was scheduled for the start of February.
Perth and Kinross councillor Coates denied driving a car with a distinctive personal number plate while she was more than twice the legal limit.
Coates, who sat on the local authority’s licensing committee, denied being drunk at the wheel of her Citroen C1, near her home on September 26.
Coates, 65, of Cornhill Road, Perth, is alleged to have driven while the proportion of alcohol in her urine was 177 milligrams, in excess of the 67 migs limit.
She is alleged to have driven under the influence of alcohol and without insurance in the city’s Longcauseway, Seafield Road and Cornhill Road.
Became councillor after child abuse scandal
Coates, who was a past secretary of the Perth Show and has run her own events business and property letting agency, was elected to represent Perth City South in November 2017.
The former teacher and Rotary Club president was placed on the Sex Offenders Register after admitting the charge.
Coates sat on the Perth Common Good Fund Committee and the Pre-Determination Committee and claimed almost £18,000 in expenses during the last financial year.
Coates, who is married to Perth City North Councillor Harry Coates, was also on the Tayside Joint Valuation Board and previously on the Tayside Contracts Joint Committee and the Tay Rivers Trust.
Suspended by party
Councillor Murray Lyle, leader of the local authority’s Conservative administration, confirmed Coates had been suspended by the party after the allegation came to light.
“As leader of the Scottish Conservative Group on Perth and Kinross Council, I have acted to suspend Councillor Audrey Coates pending the outcome of any court process.
“It is important that the legal process is carried out as quickly as possible and I will await the decision of the sheriff court before making any further comment.
“Councillor Coates has also been suspended from the Scottish Conservative and Unionist Party, also pending the outcome of the court process.”
A spokesman for Perth and Kinross Council said it was unable to comment on live court proceedings.