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Strange Day in Court
funkynut
post Tue, 5 Dec 2017 - 01:59
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Colchester Magistrates. 43 in a 30. It was absolute bull crap. The officer lied his ass off and the judge ignored all witnesses who supported me. Officer just did not like my exhaust sound and judge was pals with the policeman.

Offense location : Green Farm Lane Billericay

Anyway, I cross examined the officer on the use of his hand held laser device. It was proven that he had just 2.5 seconds to spot my car and make a speed measurement yet claimed that was plenty of time because he was like John Wayne on the scope and trigger. The judge was asleep and did not give a toss.

Even being a hand held device not on a tripod did not phase this guy. he claimed that the manufacturers of the device state that tripods are bad and that hand held is best.

Offense date@ 10th May 2017. Court date: Today 4/12/17

Thats a long time to get to court dont you agree? i wonder if they deliberately delayed it to dry up witnesses.

Any way,I was given a total of £900 in fines and costs, points on the license AND disqualification. I know that is not allowed on a clean license but guess what the idiot judge did... He looked at my 3 year old endorsement that are expiring next month and stated that they expire according to the conviction date not the offense date. The old endorsements are for speeding so they expire via the offense date! Again, the judge did not listen to my objections so I write to the court tomorrow to sort this crap out

cheers
Claire

This post has been edited by funkynut: Tue, 5 Dec 2017 - 02:04
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post Tue, 5 Dec 2017 - 01:59
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cp8759
post Tue, 5 Dec 2017 - 07:34
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We were not in court so none of us can really comment on your trial, we also know nothing of the circumstances of the offence (43 at 2am is different from 43 at school-run time outside a school). However you must bear in mind that the judiciary has often endorsed the following view expressed by Lord Justice Auld:

"A criminal trial is not a game under which a guilty defendant should be provided with a sporting chance. It is a search for truth in accordance with the twin principles that the prosecution must prove its case and that a defendant is not obliged to inculpate himself, the object being to convict the guilty and acquit the innocent."

So the real question is, were you speeding? If you were doing 43 in a 30 (which in your opening post you have not denied), then the outcome of the trial is the correct one, at least in terms of verdict. What was the date of your original speeding offence? You say they're 3 years old, but if they were less than 3 years old on 10 May 2017, the judge was right to take them into account. If they're older than that, the judge might have made an error of law when it came to sentencing and you may be able to appeal the sentence, but it would be very surprising if a District Judge were to make such an error.

The time between the offence and the trial is neither here nor there, providing you had a notice of intended prosecution within the relevant time limit you had fair warning of the need to preserve evidence, as a general rule you might be able to argue the delay is such that you are denied a fair trial but only if the delay is 2-3 years or more.


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I am not on the "motorists's side", nor am I on the "police/CPS/council's" side, I am simply in favour of the rule of law.
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AntonyMMM
post Tue, 5 Dec 2017 - 08:27
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The delay between offence and trial is quite normal - nothing suspect about that.

It takes much less than 2.5 seconds to get a reading with a laser speed measuring device, and there is no requirement to use a tripod, so if that was the extent of your defence you were very badly advised to take this to court. The level of fine/costs is about right for a NG trial.

Having made the choice and been convicted, you now have two possibilities - to appeal to Crown Court against conviction ( for which you would need a proper defence), or to appeal against sentence if you feel that has been wrongly awarded.

QUOTE (funkynut @ Tue, 5 Dec 2017 - 01:59) *
Any way,I was given a total of £900 in fines and costs, points on the license AND disqualification.


We need more detail of exactly what the sentence was - you can't get points and a ban for a simple speeding offence, so we must assume that the points you were given put you on 12+ and an automatic 6 month ban.

You need to say exactly what points you had (with dates of each offence) and how many you were given for this.

If you were disqualified as a totter - you could have made a plea of exceptional hardship to reduce/avoid the disqualification - did you do that ? If yes, what arguments did you use, if no, then why not ?

This post has been edited by AntonyMMM: Tue, 5 Dec 2017 - 08:27
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peterguk
post Tue, 5 Dec 2017 - 08:38
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Did you plead NG to speeding? If yes, what was your defence?


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Jlc
post Tue, 5 Dec 2017 - 08:51
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QUOTE (funkynut @ Tue, 5 Dec 2017 - 01:59) *
...so I write to the court tomorrow to sort this crap out

It's not clear what you're asking?

Totting bans are when you reach 12 points within any 3 year rolling period, based upon the date of the offence and not the conviction date.
Was a fixed penalty offered? Was it 'rejected'?
You appear to state you had a 'clean' licence but a 3 year old offence expiring next month isn't clean?
The sentence is either points or a ban - it cannot be both. But points can trigger revocation (for New Drivers) or a totting ban.

Please clarify and then the next steps (if any) can be clarified as simply writing to the court may be futile.

QUOTE (funkynut @ Tue, 5 Dec 2017 - 01:59) *
Thats a long time to get to court dont you agree? i wonder if they deliberately delayed it to dry up witnesses.

It's actually quite normal - they have 6 months to commence proceedings and the hearing can be outside that period.

QUOTE (funkynut @ Tue, 5 Dec 2017 - 01:59) *
Colchester Magistrates. 43 in a 30.

That excess would likely be 4 or 5 points. It sounds like you pleaded not guilty where costs can be large - the CPS list a contested trial at £620.

This post has been edited by Jlc: Tue, 5 Dec 2017 - 08:48


--------------------
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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NewJudge
post Tue, 5 Dec 2017 - 09:10
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Assuming you faced a trial following a NG plea, what exactly was the basis of that plea? Was it that you were not speeding at all or was it that you doubted the accuracy of the reading?

Personally I believe that a District Judge (who normally also has the assistance of a Legal Adviser although he/she does not undertake so much advisory duties as when sitting with magistrates) would be unlikely to make an error in banning you for "totting" as you describe, so perhaps you could supply your previous offence dates as suggested.

This post has been edited by NewJudge: Tue, 5 Dec 2017 - 09:12
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funkynut
post Tue, 5 Dec 2017 - 10:47
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Thanks, I will give more info about the offense in a moment. My points are MS90 and SP30 both expire 21st Feb 2017
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southpaw82
post Tue, 5 Dec 2017 - 10:50
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QUOTE (funkynut @ Tue, 5 Dec 2017 - 10:47) *
My points are MS90 and SP30 both expire 21st Feb 2017

How did you manage to commit both offences on the same day?


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Any comments made do not constitute legal advice and should not be relied upon. No lawyer/client relationship should be assumed nor should any duty of care be owed.
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funkynut
post Tue, 5 Dec 2017 - 11:06
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To be honest I was not speeding just revving my engine because it kept stalling and I was behind a slow bugger doing 28mph and kept braking. The officer was pointing the gun at me from behind a small van which I though was not allowed because the returning laser would be disturbed by the van possibly?
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AntonyMMM
post Tue, 5 Dec 2017 - 11:09
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QUOTE (funkynut @ Tue, 5 Dec 2017 - 11:06) *
To be honest I was not speeding just revving my engine because it kept stalling and I was behind a slow bugger doing 28mph and kept braking. The officer was pointing the gun at me from behind a small van which I though was not allowed because the returning laser would be disturbed by the van possibly?


Sounds like you had no real idea of what a possible defence would be - and a conviction was inevitable. You now need to concentrate on the sentence ....answer the questions we asked previously about what exactly you received, and what points (and offence dates) you have on your licence and you may get some useful help.

This post has been edited by AntonyMMM: Tue, 5 Dec 2017 - 11:10
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NewJudge
post Tue, 5 Dec 2017 - 12:24
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QUOTE (funkynut @ Tue, 5 Dec 2017 - 10:47) *
My points are MS90 and SP30 both expire 21st Feb 2017


Yes a little more clarity required. When you say the points "expire" what do you mean? Were both offences committed on 21st February 2014? If they arose from the same event they could not possibly have been committed on the same day. The MS90 code results from a S172 (Failing to supply driver's details) offence. This is not committed until 28 days after the request for information has been served and that request itself would not have been served until around a week after the date of the speeding allegation at a minimum. So they must be around five weeks apart as a minimum and possibly longer. To have arisen from two separate incidents but committed on the same day you must have committed the speeding offence (for which you received the SP30) exactly 28 days after you received the request for driver's details (which led to the MS90). Possible but probably not very likely.

This post has been edited by NewJudge: Tue, 5 Dec 2017 - 12:26
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Jlc
post Tue, 5 Dec 2017 - 12:33
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QUOTE (funkynut @ Tue, 5 Dec 2017 - 10:47) *
My points are MS90 and SP30 both expire 21st Feb 2017

2018 perhaps? (or did you mean expired)

If those points were active for totting then that would explain why this latest matter went to court (as you cannot accept a fixed penalty offer where you tot).

QUOTE (funkynut @ Tue, 5 Dec 2017 - 11:06) *
To be honest I was not speeding just revving my engine because it kept stalling and I was behind a slow bugger doing 28mph and kept braking. The officer was pointing the gun at me from behind a small van which I though was not allowed because the returning laser would be disturbed by the van possibly?

They can 'hide' and being behind a van in itself is not an issue if they have clear sight of your vehicle to make a measurement. But if you were following another car at 28mph then how did they get a reading of 43 unless you overtook?


--------------------
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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funkynut
post Tue, 5 Dec 2017 - 12:41
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I have just spoke to the court , they confirmed a 28 day disqual but no points. Fine/cost £940. Thats £640 to prosecution and £300 victim comp.

When it comes to challenging an officer in court I could only bring several witnesses who were in my car at the time. Amazingly the judge ignored the witness evidence because everyone made the same claim so there was obvious collusion. ?? Should they have all said something different?

Those historic points are for failing to disclose driver and 3 points for the offense that related to. Another odd thing I don't get, should I have just got 6 points for failing to disclose and not another 3 points for the offense it related to?

What may make this post interesting and educational is the points tally system dispute that seems to be going on between the court and DVLA....

Take my points for example, the offense date is 21st Feb 2014 with an expiry date of 21st Feb 2017. Removal date 21st Feb 2018. There is no mention of conviction date on the basic DVLA readout I have, just the expiry date based on offense date.

So when I go into court yesterday I have my basic DVLA readout that says I have 0 current points. When I call my insurance I tell them I have 0 current points based on this output. But the court apparently according to my conversation with a court staff this morning do their own tally system based on conviction date. My conviction dates for the historic points on my license is 4th November 2014. So to make this clear...

Speeding offense and failure to notify: 9 points given on conviction date 4th November 2014 for offense committed on 21st Feb 2014.
Expiry date according to DVLA based on offense date: 21st Feb 2017

The court ignore the offense date and go on the conviction date so even if DVLA say the points are expired they go on the conviction date. They disqualified me according to this crazy rule...., If your conviction date had not expired when you committed the new offense then we take into account the points you had on your license at that time based on conviction date for tallying purposes, even if by the time you get to court for the new offense those points have expired they are still tallied.

So if you have 9 points on your license for speeding that expire tonight based on conviction date and you get a ticket today, the court will still use those 9 points to tally up a ban because they claim the points were active at the time of the offense. Even if your court case for today's offense is held in 2 years from now.

I disagree with this system on 2 counts and think they have it wrong but please correct me if I am as there may be a completely new system in place to the one I am used to.

1. Should they be tallying speeding offenses by conviction date? I thought only major offenses were tallied by conviction date i.e dangerous driving, drunk driving etc.

2. If your points are off your license by the time you get to court then the points you had on the license at the time of the offense are irrelevant

thanks
Claire

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AntonyMMM
post Tue, 5 Dec 2017 - 12:58
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Points count for totting purposes for 3 years, from the date of offence ....quite clear. There are slight exceptions for very serious offences, where the date of conviction is used - not applicable in your case

They stay on your licence for 4 years for most traffic offences, or for ten years for drink driving offences . That means the court can see them, and take note of them.

Your current offence falls into band B of the sentencing guidelines which suggests 4-6 points or a 7-28 day ban. The guidelines also allow for previous convictions to be considered an aggravating factor.

You can appeal against sentence to the crown court, but your sentence is within the guidelines, albeit at the top of the scale for the speed - probably not helped by using such a weak defence and taking up the courts time.

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funkynut
post Tue, 5 Dec 2017 - 13:13
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s.29 RTA says that (2) If any of the offences was committed more than three years before another, the penalty points in respect of that offence shall not be added to those in respect of the other.

So if my offense expiry date for the historic offenses is Feb 2017 and the new offense occurred May 2017 why did the court tot them up?
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peterguk
post Tue, 5 Dec 2017 - 13:21
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QUOTE (funkynut @ Tue, 5 Dec 2017 - 12:41) *
When it comes to challenging an officer in court I could only bring several witnesses who were in my car at the time. Amazingly the judge ignored the witness evidence because everyone made the same claim so there was obvious collusion. ?? Should they have all said something different?



The device used to measure your speed was assumed, in law, to be operating correctly.

Apart from your passengers saying you were not exceeding the limit, did you present any other evidence to cast doubt on the device's reading?


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BaggieBoy
post Tue, 5 Dec 2017 - 13:25
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QUOTE (funkynut @ Tue, 5 Dec 2017 - 13:13) *
So if my offense expiry date for the historic offenses is Feb 2017 and the new offense occurred May 2017 why did the court tot them up?

They didn't, you seem to have got an outright ban for the offence, if it was a totting ban you would have got 6 months (unless reduced due to a hardship plea). It seems that looked at your driving record and decided based on your previous convictions that the maximum ban was appropriate.
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funkynut
post Tue, 5 Dec 2017 - 13:34
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QUOTE (BaggieBoy @ Tue, 5 Dec 2017 - 13:25) *
QUOTE (funkynut @ Tue, 5 Dec 2017 - 13:13) *
So if my offense expiry date for the historic offenses is Feb 2017 and the new offense occurred May 2017 why did the court tot them up?

They didn't, you seem to have got an outright ban for the offence, if it was a totting ban you would have got 6 months (unless reduced due to a hardship plea). It seems that looked at your driving record and decided based on your previous convictions that the maximum ban was appropriate.


The judge told me I had totted up points which is why he gave the ban. I had to stand in the dock and give reason as to why he should not ban me for longer
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NewJudge
post Tue, 5 Dec 2017 - 13:42
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QUOTE (funkynut @ Tue, 5 Dec 2017 - 13:13) *
So if my offense expiry date for the historic offenses is Feb 2017 and the new offense occurred May 2017 why did the court tot them up?

They did not tot them up:
QUOTE (funkynut @ Tue, 5 Dec 2017 - 12:41) *
I have just spoke to the court , they confirmed a 28 day disqual but no points.

You have been disqualified for 28 days for your latest offence alone. If you had been subject to a totting up ban it would have been 6 months.
QUOTE (funkynut @ Tue, 5 Dec 2017 - 12:41) *
Those historic points are for failing to disclose driver and 3 points for the offense that related to. Another odd thing I don't get, should I have just got 6 points for failing to disclose and not another 3 points for the offense it related to?

Only you can tell us that. Normally no conviction for speeding is possible without the driver's details. Perhaps when you tried to deal with the matter you had already committed the S172 offence (by failing to reply within 28 days) and then did reply but late. You could then be convicted on both counts. Anyway, it is of no consequence now. The time to have challenged that was when you were convicted.
QUOTE (funkynut @ Tue, 5 Dec 2017 - 12:41) *
There is no mention of conviction date on the basic DVLA readout I have, just the expiry date based on offense date.

Because the conviction date is irrelevant (even more so in your case as you have not been disqualified under the "totting up" rules).
QUOTE (funkynut @ Tue, 5 Dec 2017 - 12:41) *
So to make this clear...

Speeding offense and failure to notify: 9 points given on conviction date 4th November 2014 for offense committed on 21st Feb 2014.

As I explained earlier, those two offences (if they arose from the same incident) could not possibly have been committed on the same date.
QUOTE (funkynut @ Tue, 5 Dec 2017 - 12:41) *
The court ignore the offense date and go on the conviction date so even if DVLA say the points are expired they go on the conviction date. They disqualified me according to this crazy rule....,

No they didn't (see above)

The "totting up" rules are quite straightforward. Twelve points accumulated from offences committed within three years triggers the ban. Your understanding of the proceedings is why you are confused. You have not been disqualified under the totting up rules at all but for the single offence of speeding alone.

Just one other thing: you stated "£640 to prosecution and £300 victim comp." This also cannot be correct. The prosecution costs seem about right (though £620 is the usual amount). The "victim comp." (properly called a "surcharge") is calculated at 10% of the fine (Minimum £30, Maximum £170). So £270 fine and £30 surcharge, perhaps?

This post has been edited by NewJudge: Tue, 5 Dec 2017 - 13:54
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The Rookie
post Tue, 5 Dec 2017 - 13:45
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So go to the DVLA website and find out the exact offence dates for your previous convictions.


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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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Council PCN's
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