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Truck driver 'watched Battlestar Galactica' on laptop while driving

A truck driver watched espisodes of the cult sci-fi show Battlestar Galactica as he drove a 38-ton lorry along a motorway, a court heard.

Benjamin Trotsman, 37, was spotted driving erratically in the early hours of the morning by another trucker who called police.

He was travelling north on the M6 and was seen veering across the carriageway over a 25-mile stretch between Kendal and Penrith in Cumbria.

A Cumbria Police spokesman said: "The driver was seen to be watching a film on a laptop computer that was situated on the dashboard in his cab.

"He appeared oblivious to other motorists and continued to drive in an erratic manner, speeding up and slowing down, and crossing on occasions on to the hard shoulder."

Police stopped the lorry and when they examined his laptop it appeared that Trotsman had been watching Battlestar Galactica.

Trotsman, of Bridgnorth, Shropshire, initially pleaded guilty to a charge of driving dangerously at Penrith magistrates court last month.

He then applied to withdraw his guilty plea, and change it to not guilty, but magistrates rejected the request.

His solicitor Nigel Beeson told magistrates that Trotsman had entered his guilty plea "in the heat of the moment" and now claimed to have been reading a map on his laptop.

Mr Beeson said: "My client's case is 'Yes I was driving along, yes I did have my laptop on the dashboard, but it had a Google map or whatever on it.'

"In other words there was a large version of sat-nav open. Looking at a map would not be dangerous driving."

The case was adjourned and Trotsman will be sentenced on October 3.

Speaking outside the court he denied that he had been watching Battlestar Galactica.

The cult show was first broadcast in America 30 years ago and starred Lorne Greene and Dirk Benedict.

It tells the story of a group of humans aboard a starship searching for the mysterious planet Earth after their homeland is destroyed by intelligent robots.

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