Newcastle’s Cheick Tioté avoids prison sentence after using €15,000 fake drivers license

Dirty Tackle
(Getty/Yahoo composition)
(Getty/Yahoo composition)

A recent Dirty Tackle survey found that approximately 101% of Premier League footballers have received a driving ban for either going too fast or not having a license and insurance (there was a 1% margin of error).

Cheick Tioté is the latest player to try and circumnavigate around the rules of the road, as Newcastle Crown Court has given him a seven-month suspended prison sentence for attempting to exchange a fake Belgian driving license for a genuine UK one. According to The Telegraph, Newcastle's Ivorian midfielder paid €15,000 ($20,600) for the license from a man he met at Brussels Airport, and he would've gotten away with it if it wasn't for those pesky DVLA (DMV) agents who are paid to spot extremely expensive forged legal documents.

The Telegraph have more detail from the skateboarding legend who was acting as prosecutor:

Tony Hawks, prosecuting, said that when passing through Belgium, the Ivory Coast international met a man near Brussels airport and handed over the cash and a photograph of himself.

He then attempted to send it off to the DVLA in Swansea with an application for a UK licence.

"The licence was a very good forgery but there were a number of features that showed it was a forgery," said Mr Hawks.

"The offence is aggravated by what he has done as he sought to change base metal into gold."

Tioté was saved from an instant prison sentence by pleading guilty to the crime, but he will now have to complete 180 hours of unpaid work in the community, in addition to fines totalling £4,495 ($7,200). It may take the 27-year-old anything up to a day to earn that money back.

Oddly, the Newcastle star was also given six points on his license — even though he quite obviously doesn't have one.

If the court really wanted to punish him, they should have dropped the community service but forced him to carpool to work with Joe Kinnear every day.

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Ryan Bailey is a writer for Dirty Tackle on Yahoo Sports. Have a tip? Email him at or follow him on Twitter!

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