Help - Search - Members - Calendar
Full Version: Cases in Court
FightBack Forums > Queries > Speeding and other Criminal Offences
WTF
I have about a week before I decide which way I am going to go...

Are there any court cases going ahead in the next week that I could turn up to and watch. I am based in Slough (horrible place that it is) so a court somewhere near me would be nice...

Sean
Mika
Hi,

Do you think you could give us an outline as to why you are in court, and why you need to “decide which way you are going to go”?

If yours is the first hearing of a case that is related to an unsigned Form, and you enter a plea of not guilty, it is unlikely that anything will happen for months.

The courts would appear to be using all sorts of ‘delaying tactics’ at the moment. The most compelling “excuse” that I have heard so far was that “the wrong type of leaves were on the court house steps”. rolleyes.gif
WTF
QUOTE ("Mika")
Hi,

Do you think you could give us an outline as to why you are in court, and why you need to “decide which way you are going to go”?

If yours is the first hearing of a case that is related to an unsigned Form, and you enter a plea of not guilty, it is unlikely that anything will happen for months.


I have recieved a NIP for 58 in a 40. The initial 28 days runs out in a week and a bit. I am trying to decide whether to take it on the chin or whether to fight and go down the unsigned NIP route.

I have a volunteer to act as an agent and I think I am Yorke compliant otherwise. Car is registered to me and I already have the photos which show a good picture of the rear of the car (Camera was a mini gatso).

I have seen a solicitor already from Kettering but can't justify his fees in the risk/reward equation. I suspect that the hearing would be somewhere like Hammersmith and the fees rise to much because its outside the solicitors main area.

So - the reason for my question...

I am trying to make a decision with as many facts as possible - so the more information as possible. I'd like to be able to watch what happens in court on a related case if anyone has one.

Incidently can any reccomend a London based solicitor that knows what he is talking about - I think I have found one - but a seperate reccomendation would be useful...

Also would anyone disagree with the following:

Worst possible case where S172 & Speeding are lost = solicitor fees on two occaisons + £1,000 fine + 6 points
nigeldunne64
Sean, you should definately go the unsigned route for now, pending the outcome of other cases which will be posted here. The unsigned route will give you around 6 months to watch for updates and at any time the scamera unit will doubtlessly take your money if you need to have a change of heart.
As you will have read most people who go the unsigned route wait ages to get any summons at all, and even then CPS may still decide to drop the case. If you plead guilty you will get at least a £60 fine and 3 points but may get worse. One of my work colleagues decided to take the EASY route and plead guilty for 72 in a 40 ( at the end of a three lane road going into a FOUR lane road but 40 limit!! ) and at 65 with a clean licence he got £280 fine and 6 points icon_evil.gif
Every other member of staff has gone the unsigned route and NO-ONE has yet to get a summons, my alleged offence going back to April this year and still no summons. Don't make it easy for them, and then soon the people power will defeat the cameras.
andybn
As for a speed aware solicitor.
I would reccommend

Robert @ PryceWoodrow

A friend of mine has just used him, he was looking at a ban. Instead he ended up with a fixed penalty.... smile.gif

I have personally met the guy, he is a nice guy and is very switched on.

He also happens to be within spitting distance of 'in london' "30mins "
WTF
Its not the money per se that bothers me. I can afford the fine and a couple of sessions with the solicitors / courts.

I am however bothered by the number of speed cameras around and the fact that the authorities are concentrating on speed to the virtual exclusion of everything else (bad, dangerous and drunken driving to name but a few).

I had already spoken to Robert Dobson and formed the impression that he seems to know something about what he speaks so thanks for the referral.

We shall have to see what happens....

8)
WTF
Unsigned NIP filled in by agent (I had hurt my hand and couldn't write comfortably).

Now we see what happens....
WTF
Next Stage reached - I guess this is a B&B letter from the Met

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Dear ............

Case Reference No: .......................

I refer to the incident involving vehicle ............ on xx/xx/xxxx and the notice sent by this office requiring you to provide the name and address of the driver of the motor vehicle at that time.

The requirement to provide details of a driver addressed to you has been returned anonymously to this unit.

Accordingly a further notice will shortly be sent to you, under seperate cover, for completion and signature. If you do not supply a signed response to this statutory requirement, proceedings will be instituted against you for failure to respond.

Yours Sincerely,

etc

-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------

I believe that the consensus of opinion here is to ignore this and to further ignore the new S172 form that arrives.
jimmy ferrari
Unless things have changed now with Yorke and Mawdesley, get a letter sent back, special delivery, unsigned and typed, from your 'agent' asking where in law it is stated that the form must be signed.
Ticehurst, Wilkie and Owen all for some strange reason avoided making a direct ruling on it. ohmy.gif
There are drafts of these letters on the site, you may then get another B&B letter or notification that you are being summoned for failure to supply info under S172. then do not communicate further.
Mika should be able to give you the best course of action as he has some cases ongoing which will be changing the process, I would hope :!:
TomP
There may be a way one more ways around thisI'll throw them in to see what others think.

1. Print the recored delivery/special delivery track and trace number on the form near the driver information and make refreance to it. (You must get the number before sealing the envelope) still no a sigiture but proof it came from you! When they write to you to say its was anonymous, you can send them a copy of the recorded / special delivery slip. NB. both types of post now have the sender's address on the rear of the package!

2) Return the form unsigned with a covering letter signed by someone else per proxy (on your behalf). eg. the Registered keeper has asked me to return the enclosed, It has not therefore been return anonymously! Pehalps the per proxy could even have a letter from you asking them to send it back!

3) Send the form by FAX unlike E-mails, Telex and Faxes can be used for legal documents ,but do not sign it! You will I trust have a copy of the send receipt?

4) Now can a signed covering letter enclosing the completed form be taken as part of a signed ststement? Say if the letter only says further to your request, please find attached the information you requested, without making any diffintive referance to its contents or any mention to a traffic offence?


Tom p
DefaDog
The comment that the form was returned "anonymously" is interesting. Do they believe someone else filled it in? given that they can now state that they served the document on you by first class post, they therefore assume that you have received it.

I assume that you have filled in all the other details on the form - Is it not therefore reasonable to assume that you therefore returned it?

Definately ask them where it states in law that you must sign the form, and whilst you are at it, ask them where in law it states that you are obliged to provide a statement - as this seems to be the basis of their argument.
jeffreyarcher
QUOTE (NugentS)
I believe that the consensus of opinion here is to ignore this and to further ignore the new S172 form that arrives.

Well, at least somebody reads Mika's posts. rolleyes.gif

QUOTE (jimmy ferrari)
Unless things have changed now with Yorke and Mawdesley, get a letter sent back, special delivery, unsigned and typed, from your 'agent' asking where in law it is stated that the form must be signed.
[forum link]
[forum link]
[forum link]

NugentS will, of course, retain the nice letter from the Met confirming receipt of "The requirement to provide details of a driver addressed to you".
WTF
I am happy about not entering into any correspondence with the police. However I do have one thought..........

If they sent me a new Section 172 am I not obliged to respond to it in the same manner as the initial S172. After all it is a legal request for information so my "agent" should respond as was done the time before........

?
jeffreyarcher
QUOTE (NugentS)
I am happy about not entering into any correspondence with the police. However I do have one thought..........
If they sent me a new Section 172 am I not obliged to respond to it in the same manner as the initial S172. After all it is a legal request for information so my "agent" should respond as was done the time before........

[forum link]
WTF
Fair enough - I had missed that one.......

Oh and just for extra information - the initial S172 returned contained name, address and home phone number - thats it.
WTF
Next stage reached. The new NIP has appeared in the post. I do not intend to respond as my legal obligations have already been met...

However on this occaison the nice helpful police sent me an faq as well that I thought might interest people: Some excerpts below

Q I was the driver. Do I have to incriminate myself?
A You are not being asked to do so: driving a vehicle is not an offense. In any proceedings it will be necessary for the prosecution to prove that your manner of driving was unlawful

Q All this is about making momet, isn't it?
A Absolutely not. Traffic safety cameras were used widely in London for 10 years before Parliament decided that the police could be allowed to recover the cost in certain circumstances. The sole purpose of the cameras is to prevent collisions where they are likely to occur

If anyone wants the full document - I can email - just send me an email and I will respond but the interesting bits are above.





[/img]
sadarar
QUOTE (DefaDog)
The comment that the form was returned "anonymously" is interesting. Do they believe someone else filled it in? given that they can now state that they served the document on you by first class post, they therefore assume that you have received it.


Im really quite interested in this train of thought because it seems I am missing something, although I cannot see what (obviously) so if anyone can point out my oversight I'd be grateful.

Does criminal law in this country not still abide by the principal of "innocent until proven guilty"?

In that case is the burden not on the CPS to prove that *YOU DID NOT* fill in the form to successfully convict for S172? likewise a speeding confession for a camera detected offence needs a proof that the suspect *DID* fill the form in, even under PACE.

Opinion seems to be very hard on the side that you need to bend over backwards to prove you did not fill in the form, but I cannot see why this is so, although IANAL and have no legal training, and am maybe being naive.

I have asked this question elsewhere on this forum, without response, but surely someone must at least have an opinion?
Tamara-D
QUOTE (sadarar)
Does criminal law in this country not still abide by the principal of "innocent until proven guilty"?

It should be that you are "innocent until proven guilty" in this country. For the past 11 years at least it seems this has not been the case - until now. biggrin.gif
QUOTE (sadarar)
In that case is the burden not on the CPS to prove that *YOU DID NOT* fill in the form to successfully convict for S172?

Indeed, and this is why you will receive a B&B letter from the scamera partnership or police force if you return the form but fail to sign it. They know that if they pass this to the CPS, they will be told that the accused has satisfied the requirements of S172 and as the form is not signed it can't be used as evidence in the speeding case.
QUOTE (sadarar)
likewise a speeding confession for a camera detected offence needs a proof that the suspect *DID* fill the form in, even under PACE.

That is why, as I understand it, Mawdesley's case was returned for re-trial. It was established (and someone please tell me if I am wrong) that Mawdesley DID fill in his form but did not sign it. So the answer is yes the CPS do need to prove that you filled in the form in order for it to be a confession under PACE. (whether it is signed or not)

Which therefore shows you that either route will lead to chaos.

Tamara
nigeldunne64
For what it is worth I think the reason for the "anonymous" statement is just a change in tack by the scamera unit. they are well aware that quoting DPP v Broomfield doesn't work and now are trying a new tack. The bottom line is still to get an agent to fill in the form, send it Special Delivery, keep their letter of receipt and then sit back and wait for the summons.
My six months are up tomorrow and still no summons laugh.gif
What odds on me getting it before the end of October rolleyes.gif
Mika
Hi all,

Has anyone wondered why we have not heard anything of Mr Mawdesely’s retrial? Could it be because the honourable Mr Justice Owen has ‘cocked up’?

Were I in receipt of a NIP, I would send a letter like this to the relevant Constabulary.

Who needs badly drafted law, when we have such “gifted” High Court judges as the honourable Mr Justice Owen. icon_redface.gif
WTF
QUOTE ("NugentS")
Q All this is about making momet, isn't it?
A Absolutely not. Traffic safety cameras were used widely in London for 10 years before Parliament decided that the police could be allowed to recover the cost in certain circumstances. The sole purpose of the cameras is to prevent collisions where they are likely to occur





[/img]


Actually can anyone help me here - how can a speed camera prevent a collision from occurring - I just have visions of a brave camera leaping out in front of an oncoming car bringing it carfully to a stop and allowing the other car to proceed on its way.

But then I have been accused of being a little mad from time to time...........

laugh.gif
Tamara-D
QUOTE (NugentS)
Actually can anyone help me here - how can a speed camera prevent a collision from occurring - I just have visions of a brave camera leaping out in front of an oncoming car bringing it carfully to a stop and allowing the other car to proceed on its way.

But then I have been accused of being a little mad from time to time...........

laugh.gif

biggrin.gif Hehe!

This is all too much!

Along with Johnnym10's wanted posters, JO's big mistake and Mr Wonderful's great posts, this has taken me over the line and my laughter is now uncontrollable! laugh.gif

On a serious note, I do hope that there are no losers here, I hope everyone gets the justice that they so deserve.

Tamara
Tamara-D
QUOTE (Mika)
Hi all,

Has anyone wondered why we have not heard anything of Mr Mawdesely’s retrial? Could it be because the honourable Mr Justice Owen has ‘cocked up’?


Hi Mika

Can we be absolutely 100% sure that pace never applied to S172 or "Summary offences" before Justice Owen cocked up?? I thought that there was an argument between the various agencies as to what exactly pace applied to? Does anyone have a solicitor's or barrister's view on this?

The reason why I am asking is that not only will pre JO cases be affected, but I am having trouble seriously believing that there is a way to change the law, in order to catch a motorist speeding by camera in a way that involves sending a NIP. (Unless of course, they create a new law that is again illegal and hope it goes un-noticed!)

Comments please!

Tamara
WTF
And what force of law does the Magna Carta have? I believe it states that two witnesses are required before anyone should be found guilty of anything.....

My current hallucinogenic view is to call the camera that caught the driver to the stand... "And Now Mr Camera, can you describe the events of the day that led to you discharging your flash and taking the photograph, what were the weather conditions and on what grounds you chose to measure the accused speed (after all the police have to form an impression that a vehicle is speeding before using a laser).

Followed by (to the Magistrates) "Would you please instruct the witness to answer the question".

laugh.gif
laugh.gif laugh.gif
WTF
On a more serious note - I have now sent to the Commisioner a fairly standard PACE letter and will see what happens. My current NIP was dated 15/10/2003 so I have a while before it runs out. I am tempted however to return it in the same way as last time - but this time include the driver number which I understand wasn't available last time.
WTF
Well - I finally got a reply. I sent the PACE letter to the Commisioner of Police - Met and got a reply from the Secretary to the A/ACC of Thames Valley Police - its only taken em 17 days or so.

"Thank you for your letter dated 20 October which has now arrived in this office.

In the absence of A/ACC Donlon I am sending your letter on to Superintendant Olney, head of our Roads Policing departmentm in order that he may correspond accordingly with you.

Yours sincerely

etc etc etc
"
Mika
Hi,

‘They’ don’t appear to like the PACE letter - take a look at this post. icon_wink.gif
WTF
I have had another reply to the PACE letter. From the Thames Valley Police Fixed Penalty Support Unit. Mr Bryan Pritchard, DMS

"
I refer to your letter dates Oct 20 addresses to the Commissioner of the Met Police

Firstly may I make you aware of a motorists legal obligation under section 172 RTA 1988 to complete the driver keeper statement as requested by the police, if that includes a sig then that is what you should supply (QBD vs Broomfield 2002). The fixed penalty is simply a method fo allowing those who wish top accept liability for an alledged traffic offense the opportunity to pay a mitigated penalty without court proceedings. The police cannot issue a fixed penalty without a signed form from the driver adnitting that they were the driver at the time, it is not an admission of guilt for the purpose of a court hearing.

I understand that you have received the offer of a fixed penalty, if you wsish to contest this allegation you will have the opportunity to do so in court. If this is your chosen option you should simply allow the period for the conditional offer to elapse after which a summons would be issued.

I trust this has answered you query

Yours etc

Blah
"

Rehash of a B&B letter I think. Although I have not had the offer of a fixed penalty (and wouldn't take one anyhow) so he understands wrong.
DW190
This is a reply from GMP to a pace letter referring to an offence in 2001 of which the NIP/s172 was signed to give information and not as a voluntary confession. Conditional offer was accepted at the time. The CC obviously was not aware of voluntary confession at the time because HH Mr Justice Owen (God Bless Him) has only recently made the law more clear to both them and us.


QUOTE
Dear Sir

Re:   Fixed Penalty Issue -XXXXXXXX 9.2.2001
       Conviction code XXXXX


Thank you for your letter dated 29th September 2003. Please accept my apologies re the delay in  responding to you and I would like to confirm that we discussed certain issues surrounding this case in a recent telephone.

As confirmed the actual file to which this query relates has been destroyed in accordance with the force guidelines re file retention, the offence being over 2 years old. The issue was finalised by way of a fixed penalty and not via court process.

The notice you received was a notice of intended prosecution and notwithstanding that you raised certain queries with regard to the content you did exercise your right at the time to accept a conditional offer of fixed penalty, which was offered to you. At that time you would have been offered the opportunity to accept or decline the conditional offer and if you had chosen the latter then of course the matter would have been placed before the Magistrates and you would have been able to present any  mitigation or issued before the bench as you saw fit. You did not exercise this right and paid the penalty in line with the information you had to hand at that time.

As you quite rightly mention the law in relation to Section 172 of the Road Traffic act 1988 has been subject to much scrutiny over tbe last few years and continues to be considered throughout various trials and appeals nationally.

A section 172 notice, whether combined with a Notice of Intended Prosecution, or served singularly, provides for the putting of a simple question and that relates to the provision of information as to who was driving the vehicle at the time of the alleged offence.

That question can be asked of any person who may have that information on behalf of the Chief Officer of Police. The answer could not in itself incriminate the suspect, but it may provide proof of fact necessary to convict - this material is extracted from a report from Lord Bingham dated 5.12.2000. Subsequently other issues were considered by Lord Hope in relation to the Human Rights Conventions - with particular references to Article 6. Lord Bingham concluded the convention contained no express guarantee of a privilege against self-incrimination - the rights within Article 6 were not themselves absolute.

I would draw your attention again to the fact that your choice was exercised at the time of the notice(s) being issued and you finalised this matter within the appropriate statutory period.

I am afraid I cannot assist you further.


Yours sincerely



Marion Logan
Assistant Manager
Central Ticket Office


Files destroyed after two years.

Q. How do convicted murderers get convictions overturned.
A. Wait two years then appeal
jeffreyarcher
QUOTE (DW190)
Files destroyed after two years.
Q.    How do convicted murderers get convictions overturned.
A.    Wait two years then appeal

Murder's not a fixed penalty. icon_mrgreen.gif
WTF
OK - my offense (allegedly) was 03/09/03

Which means I am now past the initial 6 months (but probably not by enough yet)........

I guess they may be waiting for the Idriss Francis appeal to decide what to do - or they have forgotten me (I hope)

Well - its a milestone

Sean
WTF
And now I have to be out of time

biggrin.gif biggrin.gif biggrin.gif biggrin.gif biggrin.gif biggrin.gif biggrin.gif biggrin.gif biggrin.gif biggrin.gif biggrin.gif biggrin.gif biggrin.gif biggrin.gif biggrin.gif biggrin.gif biggrin.gif
icon_axe.gif

Sean

Another donation to the fighting fund will be on its way this weekend
This is a "lo-fi" version of our main content. To view the full version with more information, formatting and images, please click here.
Invision Power Board © 2001-2019 Invision Power Services, Inc.