Cambridge Rabbi Let Off for Driving While Talking On Cell Phone Because of His Communal Work


aaron-reuven-leighThe rabbi for Cambridge has appeared in court for using his mobile phone while driving. The spiritual leader who works at Addenbrooke’s and Papworth hospitals as well as Cambridge University pleaded guilty to the offence when he appeared before magistrates in Cambridge.

Aaron Reuven Leigh already had nine points on his licence for three speeding offences, and therefore faced disqualification from driving.

The rabbi from Castle Street, in Cambridge, was caught by a police officer at a roundabout off junction 11 of the M11 on June 30.
Laura Mardell, prosecuting, told the court: “The police officer was alerted to Mr Leigh as his car was not moving as he waited at the junction of the roundabout, although there was no traffic he needed to give way to.

“He could see Mr Leigh talking into a phone held to his right ear.”

The officer then watched the rabbi drive all the way around the roundabout with his phone still held to his ear.

Defending himself, Leigh said: “I am the sole resident rabbi in East Anglia and chaplain to many services in the region.

“I am requested to visit Waylen Prison and a mentally ill patient in Peterborough.

“I will not lose my job if I lose my licence, however my role as a communal rabbi means these are my responsibilities and I will not be able to carry them out without it.”

When asked by the presiding magistrate, Marisa Johnson, if anyone else could provide these services, he replied “No”.

Mrs Johnson said: “We do find there are exceptional circumstances in this case that would cause hardship, not just to yourself but to many others if you were to lose your licence.

“We are not going to disqualify you from driving but I have to warn you, you cannot use the same argument you have given today in another hearing.

“You really need to take a good look at your driving.”

For using a handheld mobile phone while driving a motor vehicle on a road, Leigh was ordered to pay a £60 fine, £70 court costs and a £15 victim surcharge.

{Cambridge News/ Newscenter}


  1. First of all, I don’t think this is even newsworthy. But since it has been reported, why doesn’t the Rabbi just get a bluetooth? AND WATCH YOUR DRIVING!