News

The £50,000 Pint – A Sobering Thought!

The Times recently reported that, following the first rise in road injuries caused by drinking and driving in over 10 years, the Government is going on the offensive against those who drive over the limit. In support of this the Department of Transport has published figures demonstrating that, for the average person, the cost of conviction for a first-time offence is between £20,000 and £50,800. (more…)

Tower Bridge (SPECS) Acquittal

As those who use it frequently may know (particularly if they’ve ever been “done”) the speed limit on Tower Bridge is 20 mph and the system the police use to enforce that limit is the apparently foolproof, SPECS speed detection device. This system is, in some ways, just a glorified but far more expensive Gatso device; at least as far as the secondary evidence part of the Gatso system is concerned – i.e. this is a time over distance = speed, detection device.  (more…)

The £2.7 Million Traffic Camera!

BBC News ran a TV report earlier today (15/01/2013) concerning the most profitable (for the authorities!) traffic camera in the UK. The camera is at a junction of the Kings Road in West London and is operated by Hammersmith & Fulham Council. Last year this “golden camera” earned the Borough a staggering £2.7 million in fines for drivers allegedly caught jumping red lights; with individual fines up to £130 per offence.  (more…)

Reduction of Driving Disqualification on Appeal

If you have just received a “totting” disqualification, having clocked up 12 or more penalty points, then the last thing you probably want to experience are more court proceedings and more lawyers! However, providing you do it within 21 days, then you have an automatic right of appeal to a Crown Court Judge sitting with two JP’s; who will have had no dealings with the matter in the Magistrates’ Court. (more…)

Stop Delaying Justice

Quite properly the courts have always been keen that speeding ticket and other motoring cases should be dealt with as quickly as possible. Now, however, as a result of a new initiative called Stop Delaying Justice, Magistrates’ are becoming increasingly reluctant to grant any form of adjournment. The idea is that cases should be dealt with at the first hearing or, if there is to be a trial, then at that second hearing i.e. by acquittal or guilty verdict and sentence. (more…)

CPS Mistake Leads to Acquittal at 101 mph!

Salisbury Magistrates’ Court was a happy venue for my client on 25/05/2012/ He was due to face trial having picked up a speeding ticket for allegedly doing 101 mph in his BMW on the A303. The case had been set down for trial over two months previously and everything required to be done by the defence had been done. The same could not be said of the CPS!  (more…)

Prosecution Service Blunders Lead to Acquittals!

“Court case blunders are blamed on Crown Prosecutors” reported The Times recently. The CPS Inspectorate, which spends its time checking the competence of the CPS, found that mistakes were being made in 7% of cases. Of the 900,000 cases taken to the Crown Court every year , 63,000 should never have been brought or were wrongly dropped.  (more…)

Failing to Provide Acquittal in Kent!

Sevenoaks Magistrates’ Court in Kent was the venue for a particularly pleasing acquittal in January 2012, when I represented a client accused of failing to provide an evidential breath test specimen at Tonbridge police station in May 2011. My client was seen driving out of a pub car park by two officers in a passing police vehicle. They did an 180 degree turn, in their Skoda, before shooting after my client with sirens sounding, and blue strobes and lights flashing. (more…)

Police Laser Devices

A significant proportion of speeding tickets are generated by mobile police lasers; the favourite seeming to be the notorious LTI 20-20. You’ll know these devices as they’re normally poking at you from a police van on a dual carriageway; motorway bridge or on the side of the road. The vans are usually easy to spot – if you’re keeping your eye on the road (!) – but sometimes the devices are operated by officers on motorcycles and these can be difficult to spot. (more…)