Hi everyone, I really need some assistance and truly hope I'm in the right place. I lack in-depth knowledge about these matters, so please… bear with me. Also, I apologize in advance for the lengthiness of this post. I just needed to get this down in writing and off my chest a little before I forget any of it. I’ll try to explain as best I can (I posted Pt1 previously but had some difficulties with the attachments, hopefully, they’ve been solved).
On Sat 16 May approx 7am, I got a call from the concierge in the block of flats where I’ve lived for nearly 18 years. When I eventually got to the intercom, the woman told me that a man named so ‘n so was asking for my flat, I told her I didn’t know anyone by that name and asked what he wanted. By the time she went back to the intercom to ask… he’d gone. I then turned and saw the First Contact Card[Send big files the easy way. Files too large for email attachments? No problem!] sticking through my letter box. I made my way down to the main desk to ask the concierge what exactly had taken place and wrote down her response. About an hour later, the same Mr so’ n so was back. I told the woman I was coming down to speak to him as I really had no idea what this was about. He had the FINAL NOTICE[Send big files the easy way. Files too large for email attachments? No problem!] in his hand and showed it to me. I asked to see the Warrant and he told me he didn't need one to serve NOTICE but there was a copy of it at his offices. I asked what the alleged offence and original fine was for but he couldn't(wouldn't) tell me. I made it clear to him that I did not have the sum he was demanding as I receive LT Inc Benefit and DLA, and that I wasn't happy to pay for something that neither he nor I had any details of. He insisted that I either pay the sum in full or they will tow away my car to be auctioned on Monday morning. I didn't want them to impound and auction my vehicle so I told him I would need time to try and find that sum of money. He agreed and said he'd call me later on that day. I scrambled around asking family and friends but I'm from a working class background and my people just don't have pools of money in reserve somewhere, like most folk.. we just about get by. When the bailiff called me that evening, I'd managed to amass about £350 and offered him that to take the clamp off my car and make arrangements re the remainder. He flatly refused and reiterated that he will ONLY accept the sum in full.That night a cousin called after hearing what had been taking place and said that her boyfreind should be able to cover the difference. I told her I would try again tomorrow as I cannot afford to owe debts to anyone. I managed on the Sunday to get the figure upto appx £600 (all in cash!) but this sum still wasn't accepted by the bailiff who extended my deadline to Monday end of business. I called my cousin that night and she got her boyfreind to call me. He asked how much I needed(£120) and I met him the next day with the cash I'd collected and details for Marston. The bailiff called late in the afternoon(close to 6pm) to inform me the sum had been paid in full and that they would come the following morning to remove the clamp. I awoke around 8:30am on Tuesday morning to find a Copy of the Distress Warrant[Send big files the easy way. Files too large for email attachments? No problem!] and a PAYMENT RECEIPT[Send big files the easy way. Files too large for email attachments? No problem!] on the floor by my front door. That was that, I heard nothing more of this issue, matter concluded... until…
On the morning of July 20th(my birthday.. ironically) after a rough and near sleepless night, I was disturbed by the sound of my doorbell. I was unable, and to be frank, too knackered to answer it and drifted off to sleep again. I woke up again after 11am and eventually got up a little after midday. I went to set a bath and saw what turned out to be two(2) Notices of Distress [1 Send big files the easy way. Files too large for email attachments? No problem! & 2 Send big files the easy way. Files too large for email attachments? No problem!] on my doormat. I looked out my kitchen window and saw a space where my car had been parked the night before. Marston had taken my vehicle. Remembering what had happened just two months earlier, I didn't even bother to call the bailiffs number. I realised the first time round, it was pointless trying to reason with these people. I felt very dejected, even helpless if I'm honest, and began ringing round again seeking assistance. On this occasion, I was unable to raise any funds whatsoever. Come Wednesday night(23rd), I was frantic. Finally, my partner phoned to tell me she would attempt to secure a loan through her bank. She contacted them the following day and her bank approved a loan for £1600. After a few hours, the loan had cleared in her account and I called the bailiff to find out where my vehicle was being held(hostage). He told me it was in Edmonton but didn’t give details. He asked me how I intended to pay, I told him by debit card. I asked him what the charges were for, why were they so high and, what was this business about a dishonoured cheque as they had not previously been paid by cheque. He made no mention at all about the £390 purportedly owed due to some conviction at HMCS CAMBERWELL detailed on NoD1&2 or, the difference between the totals at the bottom of those Notices. He only stated that there had been a discrepancy regarding the card payment made on my behalf and that the card used might have been stolen. I was taken aback by his statement and made it very clear to him that I knew nothing whatsoever about this matter. I asked him to give me any reason as to why he/they supposed I could/would be involved in such criminal behaviour considering the following:
Before and since the incident in May, my car has been lawfully parked outside the block I live in, day and night. If I was inclined to fraudulent activity, why hadn’t I attempted to either hide or sell the vehicle? Why would I leave my car there for them to scrape up knowing I’d been party to a fraud concerning it? I would be an absolute idiot to do such a thing.
I’d handed £590 in borrowed cash in good faith to a family members’ partner. I am responsible to my whole family for that money(debt). Why would I put that cash into the hands of someone I thought might jeopardise my liberty through their criminal actions?
Most importantly, I’ve been chair of a thirty year old community based charity that is in constant communication with the local authority and police community safety teams in the borough for over three(3) years now. Why did he/they think I would taint and stigmatize that organisations’ name with such antics?
To my surprise, he proceeded to inform me that he knew I was a director of this charity as they’d ran a number of searches against my name. He also stated that his company didn’t believe I was involved in this discrepancy, all the same, because of it, they were no longer willing to accept payment by debit card for the sum they were demanding. I told him that the funds were available to gain the release of my car, but it would be impossible for them to receive payment in cash for a number of reasons. Chief of those being that I do not operate a bank account and my partner, who lives in Bedfordshire, had arranged the loan to get the car released and she was not willing to walk around with that amount of cash on her under any circumstances. After digging in my heels a little and constantly reminding him that I was not refusing to pay to get the car released, he relented and said they would accept a card payment. I then called my partner to let her know what had taken place and gave her the bailiff’s contact details. The interactions that took place next can be read in my Partner’s Statement[Send big files the easy way. Files too large for email attachments? No problem!]. I myself had no further contact with the bailiff until I called him on July 27th to find out where the pound was situated. When asked, he started to give me postcode coordinates but I interrupted and told him that I didn’t know how I was getting up there so sat-nav info was of no use to me, I wanted the full address. He then suggested sending me a text with the details and then remarked that I’d refused to give him my phone number when initially making contact with him. I had my pen and paper ready and was asking once more for him to give me the details I required when one of his colleagues blurted out, and I quote… “What?.. he don’t wanna give you his phone number?.. #*ck him then!!”. I couldn’t believe my ears. The bailiff continued giving me the address and then asked if there was anything else. I told him yes.. I’d heard what his colleague had said and repeated it back to him. The bailiff just said thank you Mr C******* and pretended he hadn’t heard a word I’d said. I felt they were trying to wind me up, but I remained calm throughout. I wasn’t able to obtain a lift until approx 6.45pm. We reached the area where the Pound was located about 7.40pm and spent the next 15mins trying to find where this place was. It’s like a maze of roundabouts, trading estates and treatment plants. At 7.55pm I called the bailiff, gave him my whereabouts and asked where this place was from there. He stated that he couldn’t work out where I was so he couldn’t help me. We found the Pound about 10mins later tucked away at the end of what appears to be a private road. It was nearly 8.15pm and the place closed at 8pm(Is it only me, I just felt that this was what the bailiff’s colleague meant by “#*ck him then!!”). I spoke to one of the security guards for the yard and told him what a nightmare it had been to find the Pound, he said he was sorry but had no authority to release the car. He then asked, surprisingly, if the bailiff had given me sat-nav coordinates. I told him yes, he tried to. He said to me they do that all the time but the location doesn’t show up on a tom-tom(wouldn’t know.. don’t have one). He said that even the managers and trainers have difficulty finding the place. I returned the following evening with my Mother and collected the car.
I really do apologise for the time-span between the posts. I’ve been properly laid up these past few days and haven’t felt at all well enough to sit round the keyboard. I’ve experienced(don’t like the idea of suffering) severe sciatic and spinal complaints along with other mobility issues for many years. These complaints are greatly magnified when I’m under stress and duress, which is exactly what I am right now. I’m also seething… I just can’t fathom why Marston(and ALL these companies), take such an inhuman approach to peoples’ lives, it’s disgusting! If there’s a route I can travel that can assist in retrieving some or all of the money they’ve drained from my family and I… then I’m prepared to take it. As in the first incident in May, the bailiff who attended my home on July 20th was not certificated either, he’s not on the HMCS Register. What are the time constraints for challenges/appeals in these circumstances?
I’ve noted one or two things and have a few more questions but they can wait. I was hoping that by laying out my saga in some detail, there could be deeper analysis of the matter and an opportunity for those of you who are able, to offer your collective wisdom and practical experience/s.
Thanx in advance.