On the 3rd of September 2012, a man was stopped for speeding in Whiston in Merseyside.
When he was pulled over by the Police he gave his details as Mr Matthew Morley and provided a date of birth and a home address. Despite providing an incorrect address and not having any form of identification he was allowed to continue on his way and simply ordered to attend the police station to produce his details within 7 days. Unsurprisingly this was not done and the first thing the real Mr Morley heard of the matter was a summons to Court for speeding and failing to produce documents at the police station.
Mr Morley attempted to contact the officer dealing with the case to prove that he was not the driver of the vehicle and had been told that the officer would not see him and to deal with the matter at Court. It was at this stage that Mr Morley instructed us to assist him with his case. We wrote to the Court to enter a not guilty plea and to outline all of the issues with the prosecution evidence.
Not only had the driver’s identity not been verified in any way, even though incorrect details had been given, Mr Morley had absolutely no links to the vehicle involved whatsoever and had two friends willing to come forward as witnesses to prove that he was in both a different location and vehicle at the time of the offence.
The case was then adjourned and listed for trial while the Crown Prosecution Service looked into the points that had been raised at Court. This occurred in early April and despite almost constant calls and letters, it took until mid June, less than two weeks before the trial, before the CPS finally agreed to drop the case against Mr Morley, without him ever having to attend Court.
This case highlights the difficulties that can be faced when dealing with even the most basic of defences. With a CPS and police service that are facing ever increasing budget cuts with no reduction in the workload, the benefit of a solicitor who knows the procedures and correct information to put forward can be invaluable.
By Alex Garner
If you are facing prosecution for a motoring offence then call us for free initial advice on 0845 00 20736.