A driver has pleaded guilty and been fined for false representation and theft for using a blue badge which was not theirs.
On Wednesday November 30, 2022, Miss Goral, of Sutton Road, Southend, entered a guilty plea for three counts of fraud by false representation for misuse of the badge, and one count of theft by finding and using the badge, and not returning it to the local authority. It resulted in a two-year conditional discharge and Miss Goral was ordered to pay £20 victim surcharge and £200 costs.
In October 2021, a Traffic Warden/Civil Enforcement Officer asked to inspect a blue badge which was displayed in a vehicle which was parked in a marked disabled bay in Rectory Grove, Leigh. Miss Goral refused to surrender the blue badge for inspection and drove away from the scene without disclosing her details.
Officers from the council’s counter fraud and investigation team managed to trace Miss Goral, and she made a full admission in an interview. It was discovered the original owner had reported the blue badge as stolen from their vehicle four months prior.
Cllr Steven Wakefield, cabinet member for highways, transport and parking said: “We wholly support the use of blue badges for the most vulnerable members of society, but this sort of activity undermines a scheme aimed at assisting those that need it. We also have a duty to protect and act against those who fraudulently misuse these badges.
“If anyone has suspicions concerning similar Blue Badge misuse, or other types of corporate fraud then please call the counter-fraud and investigation team on 01702 215254 or e-mail [email protected]. All information received is treated in the strictest confidence.”