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Stopped for speeding by hand held radar 1.5 years ago and now taken to court without notification
chocolate7
post Wed, 10 Oct 2018 - 16:26
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Hello helpful community,

I'll lay try to briefly lay out the details of my of course complex case and would very much appreciate some advice and your views!

I was stopped for speeding on a road (not a motorway) last May, nearly a year and a half ago by a roadside policeman using a hand held radar. At the time, he stated that I was caught speeding at 106 miles per hour. I had my wife with me in the car so both of us said that this was not correct for two reasons - we were going up a hill in our 1.9 Seat 2009 so impossible to achieve this speed but most importantly - there was a GLA Mercedes in front of our vehicle that was indeed speeding so we were confident that the radar detected the speed of the car in front of us but since the policeman didn't have sufficient time to follow and stop this car, he stopped us as we were immediately after the Mercedes.
Anyway, I provided the details he required. I was with my EU license back then so provided my permanent address at the time in Brighton where the insurance policy was registered but specifically asked the policeman to use my wife's weekday address in London as I was going to be away for a couple of months at the time and also we were in the middle of relocating from Brighton to London so I wanted to ensure any consequent letters are safely received while I was away. I also gave my email address and my telephone number. My wife was the registered keeper of the vehicle so the V5C was already registered at the London address I had asked to be used for correspondence purposes.

Soon after this we relocated to London and never received any letters at our London address. I had no knowledge whether anything was sent to our previous Brighton address and didn't worry about it because I had asked the policeman to use the address where the vehicle was registered.

A few days ago, at the beginning of October, I received a letter from HMCTS to my London address titled 'Further steps notice' which outlines an amount of £811 I owe and the steps that would be taken against me since I failed to make a payment. (It may be worth mentioning that I believe this was triggered because I recently exchanged my EU license for a UK one with Brexit soon approaching, and my London address is now registered with DVLA).
I contacted HMCTS and explained what had happened and that this letter was the first notification I had received. As I understood from them, there was a court hearing and I was apparently given 6 points and was disqualified from driving form October last year till April this year. They also advised me to set up a payment plan (for which the first payment is not due until November and will be deducted from any possible change to the fine) and complete a statutory notification to the magistrates court effectively explaining that I wasn't aware that there was any prosecution against me. With the statutory notification, my conviction and any outstanding actions, BUT NOT the charge itself will be set aside and the case will be retried.

Despite the incentive provided by the guilty plea - one third off the imposed fine - I am intending to plead not guilty at the retrial as I am more than certain that the speed gun measured the speed of the vehicle in front of me and in fact I wasn't travelling than more than 70-71 miles per hour. My wife is a witness of that. We also went to the extend of recording ourselves describing the details of what happened immediately after the policeman let us go so that we can refresh our memories at a later stage when needed (I still keep the recording).

My first question is whether the above can be seen as a failure of delivery of notification of intended prosecution? I am assuming that the policeman would have said something relevant to this at the time he stopped me, but with all honesty I was so shocked by the millage he stated I was driving at (106!) that I can't recall details of what he told me.

Also, do you think there is any benefit in asking a legal representative for help? I've checked some fees online and it looks like I would end up paying something around £850 - £1,000 when according to my research the maximum fine that can be reimposed after the retrial is £1,000?

Additionally, at the retrial, can I be retrospectively disqualified from driving having in mind an apparent disqualification was already in place? I am a vehicle mechanic so need to be on the road every day to do my job when moving around cars, testing etc. The bizarre thing around this is that I received absolutely no query from DVLA regarding points or disqualification when I exchanged my license in August/September. Also, when I check on their website now - there are no points recorded on my license. On top of that, I set up a motor trade insurance a month ago for which I know my insurance company asked for a DVLA summary and they never raised any issues around points or disqualifications.

I am really keen to plead not guilty, as this is the reality of the situation, but to be honest am a bit fearful about the fines this may lead to... Even though a one third reduction sounds like an incentive, if I am disqualified this would prevent me from doing my work and carrying out my business. And to be honest, I do not want to lie in court saying I am guilty when I wasn't. It feels like the system is pushing you to plead guilty though!

I would truly appreciate any tips or advice you may have !

Thank you for taking the time to read this.
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post Wed, 10 Oct 2018 - 16:26
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peterguk
post Wed, 10 Oct 2018 - 16:31
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QUOTE (chocolate7 @ Wed, 10 Oct 2018 - 17:26) *
I am assuming that the policeman would have said something relevant to this at the time he stopped me, but with all honesty I was so shocked by the millage he stated I was driving at (106!) that I can't recall details of what he told me.


If the cop warned you at the time of the stop that you may be considered for prosecution (or similar) then no postal NIP is required.


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666
post Wed, 10 Oct 2018 - 17:04
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QUOTE (chocolate7 @ Wed, 10 Oct 2018 - 17:26) *
I was stopped for speeding on a road (not a motorway) last May, nearly a year and a half ago by a roadside policeman using a hand held radar. At the time, he stated that I was caught speeding at 106 miles per hour. I had my wife with me in the car so both of us said that this was not correct for two reasons - we were going up a hill in our 1.9 Seat 2009 so impossible to achieve this speed but most importantly - there was a GLA Mercedes in front of our vehicle that was indeed speeding so we were confident that the radar detected the speed of the car in front of us but since the policeman didn't have sufficient time to follow and stop this car, he stopped us as we were immediately after the Mercedes.


If you were obeying a 70 mph limit, and the car in front was indeed doing 106, then the gap in front of you would have been opening up by a minimum of 53 feet every second (67 feet in a 60 limit). Unless the Merc had only just overtaken you an instant earlier the mistaken identity theory doesn't stand up.
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The Rookie
post Wed, 10 Oct 2018 - 17:19
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Yes it’s possible if you make a statutory declaration and at the retrial to be disqualified.

It’s possible you got points, do a licence check and it will tell you.

I doubt he was using radar, a laser device is much more likley and much less likley to get the speed of the wrong vehicle.


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Jlc
post Wed, 10 Oct 2018 - 17:27
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It’s interesting that the official top speed is lower than the alleged amount - which would be blunted by the hill.

If course, proving this to the court isn’t necessarily simple.

Mistaken identity is possible but I suspect the officer won’t agree.


--------------------
RK=Registered Keeper, OP=Original Poster (You!), CoFP=Conditional Offer of Fixed Penalty, NtK=Notice to Keeper, NtD=Notice to Driver
PoFA=Protection of Freedoms Act, SAC=Safety Awareness Course, NIP=Notice of Intended Prosecution, ADR=Alternative Dispute Resolution
PPC=Private Parking Company, LBCCC=Letter Before County Court Claim, PII=Personally Identifiable Information

Private Parking - remember, they just want your money and will say almost anything to get it.
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The Rookie
post Wed, 10 Oct 2018 - 18:22
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QUOTE (Jlc @ Wed, 10 Oct 2018 - 18:27) *
It’s interesting that the official top speed is lower than the alleged amount

Does he say that?


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TonyS
post Wed, 10 Oct 2018 - 18:24
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QUOTE (chocolate7 @ Wed, 10 Oct 2018 - 17:26) *
... As I understood from them, there was a court hearing and I was apparently given 6 points and was disqualified from driving form October last year till April this year.

Points and a ban for the same offence? Unless you already had 6 points prior to this, have you checked exactly what offence(s) was charged?
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Jlc
post Wed, 10 Oct 2018 - 18:42
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QUOTE (The Rookie @ Wed, 10 Oct 2018 - 19:22) *
QUOTE (Jlc @ Wed, 10 Oct 2018 - 18:27) *
It’s interesting that the official top speed is lower than the alleged amount

Does he say that?

This seems to say so:

QUOTE (chocolate7 @ Wed, 10 Oct 2018 - 17:26) *
...so impossible to achieve this speed...


But looking at top speeds of such vehicles (model isn't given, but say an Ibiza) then 101mph seems to be it. Of course, that's not to say 106mph is impossible, depending on many factors.

(My point being is that the OP would know the difference between 70mph and absolutely thrashing the guts out of it to get 106mph - i.e. there's some plausibility to the recollection)

QUOTE (TonyS @ Wed, 10 Oct 2018 - 19:24) *
QUOTE (chocolate7 @ Wed, 10 Oct 2018 - 17:26) *
... As I understood from them, there was a court hearing and I was apparently given 6 points and was disqualified from driving form October last year till April this year.

Points and a ban for the same offence? Unless you already had 6 points prior to this, have you checked exactly what offence(s) was charged?

...or a disqual as a new driver. (Within 2 years of passing test) That excess is odds-on short ban only but points are possible...

This post has been edited by Jlc: Wed, 10 Oct 2018 - 18:43


--------------------
RK=Registered Keeper, OP=Original Poster (You!), CoFP=Conditional Offer of Fixed Penalty, NtK=Notice to Keeper, NtD=Notice to Driver
PoFA=Protection of Freedoms Act, SAC=Safety Awareness Course, NIP=Notice of Intended Prosecution, ADR=Alternative Dispute Resolution
PPC=Private Parking Company, LBCCC=Letter Before County Court Claim, PII=Personally Identifiable Information

Private Parking - remember, they just want your money and will say almost anything to get it.
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The Rookie
post Wed, 10 Oct 2018 - 20:20
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I found the 2009 Ibiza 1.9 listed at 118mph and the Leon as 114mph. I think the OP was implying it was impossible because of the uphill.


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Jlc
post Wed, 10 Oct 2018 - 20:38
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Ok, found TDI listed at 116mph. Perhaps OP can confirm exact version?


--------------------
RK=Registered Keeper, OP=Original Poster (You!), CoFP=Conditional Offer of Fixed Penalty, NtK=Notice to Keeper, NtD=Notice to Driver
PoFA=Protection of Freedoms Act, SAC=Safety Awareness Course, NIP=Notice of Intended Prosecution, ADR=Alternative Dispute Resolution
PPC=Private Parking Company, LBCCC=Letter Before County Court Claim, PII=Personally Identifiable Information

Private Parking - remember, they just want your money and will say almost anything to get it.
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Logician
post Wed, 10 Oct 2018 - 22:34
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QUOTE (TonyS @ Wed, 10 Oct 2018 - 19:24) *
QUOTE (chocolate7 @ Wed, 10 Oct 2018 - 17:26) *
... As I understood from them, there was a court hearing and I was apparently given 6 points and was disqualified from driving form October last year till April this year.
Points and a ban for the same offence? Unless you already had 6 points prior to this, have you checked exactly what offence(s) was charged?


A six month totting disqualification seems to fit, the offence itself would not attract a disqualification of that length. So probably it was 6 points for s.172 on top of presumably another 6 points, perhaps from another s.172. A totting disqualification would wipe the points off the licence, and the OP says that none are now showing It cannot have been a new driver revocation, as no new licence would have been issued without a test.

I think the OP needs to ask the DVLA for the history of his licence, not just the current position, as he may need to make two stat decs if he got previous points he was unaware of.


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chocolate7
post Thu, 11 Oct 2018 - 08:57
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Thanks for all your replies.

DVLA's online check shows '0 current penalty points' but I am assuming that any historic record of points or disqualifications wouldn't be available unless I ask for it specifically?
Still, I find it bizarre that my insurance company didn't raise anything when I was setting up my new insurance policy.

On the points question - I've been told that the 6 points would only appear on my record when I pay the fine set by the court - I've searched online but can't find any guidance around it.
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The Rookie
post Thu, 11 Oct 2018 - 09:01
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QUOTE (chocolate7 @ Thu, 11 Oct 2018 - 09:57) *
DVLA's online check shows '0 current penalty points' but I am assuming that any historic record of points or disqualifications wouldn't be available unless I ask for it specifically?

Correct, so ask.......

QUOTE (chocolate7 @ Thu, 11 Oct 2018 - 09:57) *
Still, I find it bizarre that my insurance company didn't raise anything when I was setting up my new insurance policy.

Unless you provide your licence details and the access number for them to check, how do you think they would know about it?

QUOTE (chocolate7 @ Thu, 11 Oct 2018 - 09:57) *
On the points question - I've been told that the 6 points would only appear on my record when I pay the fine set by the court

Not true, they are applied when the court awards them and informs DVLA, not when the fine is paid.


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baroudeur
post Thu, 11 Oct 2018 - 10:26
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The OP quoted.......

[/u]"A few days ago, at the beginning of October, I received a letter from HMCTS to my London address titled 'Further steps notice' which outlines an amount of £811 I owe and the steps that would be taken against me since I failed to make a payment. (It may be worth mentioning that I believe this was triggered because I recently exchanged my EU license for a UK one" .........

Surely there would be no points his 'EU' (i.e. foreign) licence unless DVLA had set up a ghost licence and transferred them to the new UK licence which seems not to be the case.

This post has been edited by baroudeur: Thu, 11 Oct 2018 - 10:27
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The Rookie
post Thu, 11 Oct 2018 - 10:28
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They should/would normally tie the two identities as the same person and apply them to the UK licence, although its possible they did not.


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There is no such thing as a law abiding motorist, just those who have been scammed and those yet to be scammed!

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nosferatu1001
post Thu, 11 Oct 2018 - 10:31
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Plus could you have a revocation for a new EU licence holder? I htought it was from the date of passing the UK test that mattered?
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The Rookie
post Thu, 11 Oct 2018 - 10:37
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No, it only applies in the 2 years after gaining the full UK licence.


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There is no such thing as a law abiding motorist, just those who have been scammed and those yet to be scammed!

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Rookies 1-0 Birmingham

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nosferatu1001
post Thu, 11 Oct 2018 - 10:55
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Hence why I cant see how they could have a 6 month ban AND 6 points, when it would be one or the other, and presumably the OP didnt already have 6 points on their licence?
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The Rookie
post Thu, 11 Oct 2018 - 10:57
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Totting? It only requires an S172 to the Brighton address as well?


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There is no such thing as a law abiding motorist, just those who have been scammed and those yet to be scammed!

S172's
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Rookies 1-0 Birmingham

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nosferatu1001
post Thu, 11 Oct 2018 - 13:14
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Yep that was my thoughts - but as they were stopped at the time why would htere be a S172 notice sent for THAT offence? There s=could be one for another offence of course...
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