The priest's car after the accidents. / juan mateu

Drunk priest blames communion wine after crashing into several parked cars in Spain

Witnesses told police the driver was speeding and talking on his mobile phone when the accident happened

JAVIER MARTÍNEZ VALENCIA.

A priest who was driving under the influence of alcohol crashed into several parked cars and told police in Spain it must have been due to the communion wine he had drunk during a private Eucharist shortly beforehand. A breathalyser test registered that he was double the permitted alcohol limit.

The accident happened on Saturday 10 December at around 10.30 in the morning. Police sources have said the priest was driving in a reckless manner and after hitting one parked car he then clipped others before crashing into another beside the door to a garage. He is reported to have been very upset when he got out of his Audi and realised that he had caused damage to five vehicles in all.

Driving at over 80 km/h

A witness told the Local Police that the priest had been driving down Calle Pedro Aleixandre at more than 80 kilometres an hour and was talking on his phone when the collision occurred. At the time, several vehicles were waiting at a red traffic light at the junction with Avenida de Peris y Valero. According to the witness, the priest had swerved to avoid hitting those cars, and that was when he crashed into the others, which were parked.

The priest has said he swerved to avoid hitting the car in front when its driver slammed the brakes on upon realising that the traffic light was red, and that he must have failed the breathalyser test because he had partaken of some communion wine a short time beforehand. He is also said to have been in a rush to get to his church because he was late for Mass.

Before the police arrived on the scene, he is said to have become involved in an argument with a passer-by who had reprimanded him in no uncertain terms for the damage he had caused to the cars.