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Old-CodJA last won the day on December 17 2017

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  1. Firstly, you need to await the letter that the TOC is likely to send you, because then you will know the unique reference allocated to this report and will be certain that your response will get to the right person I have to refer to this quote from your original message: "all set...my husband told me to take his ticket. At first I said no but because I was rushing I just took the travel ticket in the end." This suggests that you were well aware that you should not use your Husband's travelcard and that it was wrong to do so. Please don't rush into trying to force the TOC to deal with this immediately, wait to see what their letter alleges and then deal with what you know, rather than trying to guess what they believe. Prepare some accurate notes of what happened to help your clear memory for response when you get the letter and need to respond. It MAY be possible to negotiate an administrative settlement once your letter arrives, but it is too early to attempt to do so before you know exactly what has been reported. A further good reason not to rush is that occasionally, inspectors may lose their notes and if that happens, it is exceedingly difficult for them to bring a prosecution Please don't worry, what has happened cannot be undone, but once you receive the letter, come back and let us knw what has been alleged by the TOC and perhaps we can help you to mitigate the effect of your actions.
  2. Yes, the inspector's account will be assessed against your account. If as you say you admitted having used your husband's season ticket in the morning and did intend to use it again that evening at the time you were questioned, the allegation and your admission will match, because the notes will reflect both what you did and what you said I suggest this has parallel with the occasion of delivering a verdict at the Appeal Court when Lord Denning once said 'a man will be judged on his words and actions'. The description that you have given suggests sufficient evidence for a prosecutor to consider two charges, both offences contrary to Section 5(3)(a) of the Regulation of Railways Act [1889]. Talk of using the National Railway Byelaws in this case is largely irrelevant That said, i) Did travel without having previously paid her fare and did use a season ticket issued for the sole use of another identified person with intent to avoid her fare ii) Did attempt to travel without having previously paid her fare and did attempt to use a season ticket issued for the sole use of another identified person with intent to avoid her fare In practice, they may decide only to raise one Summons As Ford says, try not to worry at present, wait and see what the letter you receive says and respond truthfully, but when replying, do not expand beyond the facts alleged in that letter These letters can take several weeks to arrive at times as all TOCs prosecutors offices are very busy. For now, enjoy Christmas and try to put this out of mind until you need to respond to correspondence.
  3. Yes, dx100uk is right, the first thing you will get normally is a 'verification letter'. If an offence is evidenced they can move straight to Summons, but it is never really in anyone's interest to do so. You'll get a letter seeking your version of events and although this is serious, it is not completely beyond the realms of possibility that you may be able to avoid a Court appearance.
  4. The case in this thread has clear parallels with the Appeal Court case of Arthur Browning (1946). Convicted of attempting to avoid payment of his fare by using his spouse's season ticket contrary to Section 5(3)(a) of The Regulation of Railways Act [1889]. Appealed, and appeal rejected. The Appeal Court decided that whilst the rail company may not have lost any money, the traveller had not paid THEIR fare
  5. I have retained the bulk of your text, but removed all the areas that would appear to a prosecutor to be 'unnecessary padding'. It could be reduced further, but see what you think of this: I apologise profusely for my actions in this case. I pride myself on my integrity and honesty and I feel shameful for my moment of very poor judgement. As the sole income earner for the family (my wife is on maternity leave), a criminal record would be devastating for us as my employment relies upon a clean criminal record. I had a particularly forgetful week at the time this occurred. I was very sleep deprived after the recent birth of our first child with attendant stress. On the 28th I was running late for interview and left the house in a rush. I consequently forgot to pick up a blank carnet ticket as I left. I rushed to and through the station in an attempt to make the train I needed to make my interview on time. I grabbed a ticket from my wallet assuming it was a new blank ticket which I would populate as I rushed for the train. Onboard I realised to my horror the mistake I had made of unintentionally using an old ticket, which I had failed to check. I couldn't find my blank carnet ticket. In my complete stupidity and panic, I changed the date of a previously dated ticket to the date of travel. I made a very bad choice that's haunted me since. I tried to explain to the Revenue Protection Inspector that it wasn't premeditated and admitted my mistake and I apologised. I have never done this before, I am just so sorry for my actions and the inconvenience caused to all involved. I am happy to make immediate payment of the unpaid fare and any incurred costs that my actions have caused. I am also happy to purchase an annual pass immediately so I will not make a mistake like this again. I have also recently finished a year long voluntary mentoring programme with the charity, Chance UK where I worked with children with behavioural difficulties. A criminal record would prevent me from mentoring ever again, which would make me very sad indeed as its my passion in life. I would appreciate your consideration and I sincerely hope that you can show some leniency in this matter.
  6. It is clear that you recognise this is a serious matter so far as the TOC are concerned, whatever the motivation behind your action, the evidence makes clear that you did 'alter the date on a previously used ticket with intent to avoid the correct fare due.' As dx100uk says, you may be able to convince the TOC prosecutors office to allow you to settle this without Court action. There are no guarantees, but a concisely worded letter of apology may be sufficient to allow the company to dispose of the matter by administrative settlement It is really important not to waffle in your letter. Long rambling and pleading letters can lose the support of the reader. It is important to apologise, but remember that the reader may have a huge pile of similar correspondence to go through every day and the ones that are most likely to succeed are the ones that show clear remorse for their behaviour and apologise. Never seek to put any of the blame on others, that's a certain way of losing support of the reader. Start by offering an unequivocal apology for your actions, you can briefly mention the sleep deprivation as a result of the new baby and worries about your future, but it is also important to recognise that what you say can also be open to interpretation. Sleep deprivation is good in terms of illustrating the circumstances on the day. Financial worries may indicate a completely different mindset and if this is laboured in the letter the prosecution staff may question whether a swift financial settlement is achievable. Offer an apology for your actions and for the inconvenience caused and give a firm undertaking never to travel without a valid ticket in future. Explain that your employment requires a high level of integrity and a conviction for the criminal offence of 'avoidance of a fare' is likely to affect that future. Offer to make immediate payment of the unpaid fare and any reasonably incurred costs that your actions have caused the TOC. Please remember that this is only likely to work if you have never been previously reported for travelling without a valid tickets Don't quote a settlement figure in your letter, leave the TOC to do that in their reply. If your letter fails to secure agreement to allow a settlement then come back and let us know.
  7. There are no passenger services on Arriva Trains Wales that are driver only operated. Department for Transport agreement with the franchise holder confirm that the TOC has a Conductor Guard on all services. Arriva Trains Wales Revenue Enforcement Policy The ethos of Arriva Trains Wales is to collect the correct revenue that we are contractually due from all our passengers. We recognise however there is a small minority of passengers who will deliberately attempt to evade payment. This document sets out the process of how we will deal with these passengers and the steps we would put in place to help and protect passengers who are unaware of their responsibilities getting captured by the process. The underlying principal of this process is to protect passengers who make an innocent mistake from those who are deliberate ticketless passengers. In the first instance the customer will be asked for payment with a reasonable administration charge. The process is intended to identify those who are constant offenders or those that have carried out acts of fraud. For those passengers who have attempted to defraud we have no option but to carry out court proceedings. These processes will be in line with the ATOC Code of Practice ‘arrangements for travel ticket irregularities’ and the Passenger Focus publication ‘ticket to ride’. Process Overview All Passengers must have the correct ticket for the journey they are taking and it is their responsibility to have one, they must how ever be given an opportunity to purchase tickets before entering this process. These opportunities are: Before boarding any Train • Booking office • Ticket Vending Machine (TVM) If no facilities were available before boarding • On train If there has not been an opportunity to purchase a ticket then the passenger should be sold the correct one. In the event of a passenger choosing not to purchase a ticket they will be interviewed. After a passenger, has been interviewed for travelling without a valid ticket, before any further action is taken the customer will be written to and given 21days to confirm the details of the information provided at the time. They will be offered the opportunity to provide clarification or any mitigating circumstances. If the customer has not responded within 21 days then further action will be taken. Once a full response has been received the case will be reviewed. All cases will be assessed on their own merit. There are three possible outcomes from any case • Ceasing of Proceedings • Administrative Settlement • Prosecution Customers can make genuine mistakes. If this is the first time a customer has been identified within this process they should not normally be taken to prosecution and may be offered an administrative settlement. The exception to this is if there is an attempted fraud or other aggravating circumstance. Prosecution will be the last course of action. There are some areas where prosecution is unavoidable. • Fraud • Giving false personal details • Knowingly claiming a short journey • Repeat offender e.g. Travelling without a ticket on more than one occasion Recording of Passengers Interviewed: Detailed records of the customers that have been interviewed will be held in accordance with data protection laws. Customers Contact Transport Investigations Ltd will handle all correspondence with customers with regards to this policy.
  8. Honeybee is absolutely right, keep your letter only to the details that the train operating company are concerned with Whilst it may seem uncharitable to some, your management of your affairs are your concern. The company are not concerned with this, what they have is evidence that you attempted to use someone else's pass to travel on that day. You say that you picked up the wrong card in error, do you have one of your own? Make sure you send evidence that you held a VALID pass of your own if you did have one, then apologise and ask if they will consider letting this be dealt with by a warning If not, they have a strong case, but you may again wish to offer a sincere apology, promise never to travel without a valid ticket again and offer to pay the fares due and any reasonably incurred costs to deal with this without further action The company do not have to agree, but it is your best option if you are to avoid a more costly outcome
  9. Exceedingly unlikely. All that is necessary is for the prosecutor to identify the 'typing error' and ask to amend the application to read 'Chingford' instead of 'Cheshunt' All Court staff are fully conversant with the modernisation of admin processes and with 'drop-down' menus pre-filling forms as they are created these days it is very easy to see how such an error occurs. Typing in 'CH...' will have pre-filled the first alphabetical location in the drop-down list unless spotted and corrected.
  10. Hi HB and thanks for the kindness, time is in short supply as always, but trying to keep abreast of things
  11. Yes, definitely wait until you get your letter, but the point that I have highlighted below is the area that you will most likely have difficulty with This makes perfectly clear to any member of revenue or prosecutions dept. staff reading it that your pass had run out on 17th and that you took your husbands discounted season and used it on 18th to avoid paying your fare that morning The payment of fares, whether on Oyster, or any other form of travel ticket is timed so payment on to your Oyster can be tracked. Wait until you get your letter and see what they allege
  12. What exactly did you appeal against and what was the judgment?
  13. What intrigues me is that if you were reported by a Revenue Protection Inspector, which Train Operating Company were you travelling with and how did you come to call IRCAS ? IRCAS do not undertake prosecutions for all TOCs This is an important question and will have a bearing on the outcome for you
  14. This is very dangerous advice for other travellers who may be tempted to travel from stations without paying their fare within Penalty Fares areas as well as areas where Penalty Fares cannot be charged. There is never an obligation of an inspector to levy a penalty charge or offer a Penalty Fare Notice where the evidence suggests that a traveller intended to avoid a fare, or intended to pay the fare only if challenged. (Appeal Court judgment, Corbyn 1978.) Section 5.3 of the Regulation of Railways Act (1889) is the primary legislation in this instance, but the OP has made clear that they could also be charged with the strict liability matter of failing to comply with National Railway Byelaw 18.1 (2005). A Penalty Fare Notice is a civil remedy for a genuine mistake. Deliberately travelling without paying is intentional fare evasion. A Penalty Fare is not an appropriate remedy in those cases. Reply to the letter truthfully, apologise for your actions and undertake not to repeat the offence. Ask if the company will accept your offer to pay the fare due and the reasonable administration costs incurred by the company in dealing with your actions as an alternative to issuing a Summons for the evidence to be tested by a Magistrates Court. They do not have to agree, but if you are entirely truthful and have not come to notice in similar circumstances in the past, you stand a good chance of avoiding conviction.
  15. You should call the SWT Customer Relations office on 0345 600 0650 and explain how you believe that you came to lose the ticket just as you have done here. Explain what your actions were in the 30 minutes immediately after you alighted. You may be asked to attend for interview as described above, but in exceptional circumstances and if they are satisfied that this is a genuine event, then I would expect SWT to apply the terms above and as advertised on their current website. Do not be tempted to make an excuse, help SWT to help you by "hot-listing" the lost season so that if it comes to light being used by someone else then they can take robust action. The sooner you make a truthful report the sooner you are likely to get this sorted. Good luck
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