Court action over blue badge fraud

Peterlee Magistrates' Court.

Peterlee Magistrates' Court.

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A WOMAN has been in court after allowing someone else to use her disabled parking badge to get free parking in London.

Karen Heslop, 44, of Hillside, Chester-le-Street, was ordered to pay a total of £550 after she admitted one offence under the Road Traffic Regulation Act 1984.

Magistrates in Peterlee heard when Heslop applied to Durham County Council for the blue badge in February 2013, she had given the registration number of the vehicle she said she would be using.

The court was told that on 11 occasions, between 23 September 2013 and 3 April 2014 fraud investigators observed the same vehicle parked in the Hammersmith and Fulham area of London, more than 270 miles away from her home.

On each occasion there was no pay and display ticket inside the car but the blue badge issued to Heslop was on display.

Further investigations revealed that the vehicle was in fact registered to a woman in Newcastle and did not have a valid residents’ permit to park in Fulham.

In mitigation the court heard that this was not a case where a blue badge had been obtained from the council by deception, but Heslop did admit she had been deceitful in allowing the badge to be used incorrectly by another person.

Heslop was fined £200, with £330 costs, and ordered to pay a £20 victim surcharge.