Courts Minister Chester Borrows admits he is embarrassed after being fined $80 for speeding.

But the former police officer says he paid the fine promptly and has sworn to keep a better eye on the speedo in future.

Mr Borrows confirmed he was stopped by police doing 11km/h over the speed limit in a 100km/h area outside Patea while he was on his way to Wanganui for a meeting. He was running late and had not kept an eye on his speedo while going down a hill.

"I wasn't concentrating as much as I should have. It's very embarrassing, not only because I'm Minister of Courts who is responsible for collections. I've attended lots of fatal motor accidents and I'm very aware of the risks. So I should have been much more observant and it's embarrassing that I wasn't."


Mr Borrows said he paid his fine soon after and did not argue with the police officer or try to pull rank. "We didn't make any comment at all about occupation partly because it was blatantly obvious. I was driving a car with my name all over it."

As well as the fine, 20 demerit points were notched up against his licence.

As Minister of Courts, Mr Borrows has clamped down on fine dodgers, introducing new measures under which people with outstanding traffic fines can lose their licences. He said it was not his first speeding ticket but he tried hard not to speed and always paid his tickets promptly. He was dobbed in to the Wanganui Chronicle by a passing motorist.

A spokesman for John Key said: "The Prime Minister expects his MPs to abide by the road speed limits and face the same consequences as any other New Zealander if they don't."

- Wanganui Chronicle and Claire Trevett