“I had about 0.8 parts per thousand [in my bloodstream],” the Free Democratic Party (FDP) politician told Bild.
“It was a big mistake. It will never happen again.”
Leutheusser-Schnarrenberger, 63, set off homewards in her car on February 17th, after a well-lubricated Faschingsdienstag (Carnival Tuesday) celebration with friends lasting several hours.
But before she got home, the lawyer found herself stopped by police checking for drink drivers.
“I thought I would have metabolized enough of the blood alcohol to be able to drive again,” she told Bild.
Anyone caught with more than 0.5 parts per thousand of alcohol in their bloodstream faces a civil charge, a driving ban of up to three months and a hefty fine.
Leutheusser-Schnarrenberger was Justice Minister twice, from 1992-96 and 2009-13.
She is currently on the board of the Friedrich Naumann Foundation, the FDP's think tank, whose motto is “For Freedom”.
It seems she may have taken that a little too literally on Fasching Tuesday.
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