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Tuesday 30 September 2014

Cheshire East Council prosecutes daughter in disabled badge fraud


In one of the first cases of its kind for Cheshire East, a motorist has been fined for displaying her late mother’s disabled Blue Badge to avoid paying parking fees.

The prosecution was a result of enforcement action by Cheshire East Council’s Benefit Fraud Investigations Team and the Parking Enforcement Team.

The dedicated team of professionals has now diversified into investigating allegations of abuse of the Blue Badge scheme here in Cheshire East.

Denise Love, 57 of Merebrook Road, Macclesfield was fined £100 on each of three offences of wrongful use of the badge, the court heard when parking at the Grosvenor Centre Car Park in Macclesfield on three occasions in May and June of this year.

She pleaded guilty by post to all three offences when her case came before South and East Cheshire Magistrates in Macclesfield on September 24.

Magistrates were told that the badge ceased to be valid following the death of the defendant’s mother, in March 2014 and that it should have been returned to the issuing authority.

The prosecution was brought by the legal team under Section 117 of the Road Traffic Regulation 1984.

Councillor Les Gilbert, Cabinet member for localism and enforcement said:

“Many disabled people feel rightly aggrieved when they cannot use a disabled parking space set aside for them simply because another motorist is fraudulently displaying a Blue Badge that does not belong to them.

“This is an anti-social crime and we intend to prosecute offenders where we feel action is justified.”

“Blue Badges are meant to be used by the holder of the badge either as the driver of the vehicle or as a passenger.

“If fraudulent misuse is suspected, the matter will be vigorously investigated and could result in a criminal conviction for the person who has misused it.”

Anyone who suspects an individual is misusing a Blue Badge intended for a disabled person can ring a confidential Freephone Hotline 0800 389 2787. All calls are treated in strictest confidence.

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