The 62-year-old man from the Yonne region in central France was caught with six times the limit of alcohol in his blood after a minor collision with a learner driver’s car on August 1st.
Police at the scene found he was wearing slippers and had been driving for the past 42 years without a licence.
When asked in court why he had been driving after consuming half a bottle of plum brandy, the man replied “it was my birthday”.
The judge swiftly reminded the jury the defendant’s birthday was in fact on July 16.
“In 42 years, I have only been arrested this once,” the 62 year old told the jury.
A policeman close to the case said: “It wasn’t even midday and he had three grams of alcohol, six times what is legal, in his blood.
“He told us he had drunk half a bottle of plum brandy to pep himself up.”