I've done some research on this but all and any advice is welcomed please! Bit of a long one - here we go......
My partner is due in court at the end of the month for speeding and failing to provide driver details and he's probably going to have to self represent. We're not really too sure what to expect as neither of us have been through this before.
There was a trial in his absence a few months ago but he only just found out about when he got an attachment of earnings. He gave a statutory declaration a couple of weeks ago and plead not guilty to both charges. The background is the speeding offence took place in August 18 in a company vehicle and company owner has named him as the driver. Company owner actually sent the first notice back incomplete and was sent another one in which he then named my partner.
My partner had stopped working with this company by then (ended on bad terms) and the boss did not say anything to him at the time when he received the first NIP either (partner feels this is a stitch up!). My partner does not believe he was driving at the time but obviously it was quite a long time ago. He has had a clean license for about 25 years. The vans were driven by a number of individuals and would be swapped around during the day. No proper logs of who was driving etc were ever kept. Not even sure how he was able to identify my partner as the driver in the first place!
The photo evidence we were given 10 mins before giving the declaration was black and white so there was no way we could say it was him or even anyone else. I guess there could be a colour version available that might better identify the driver, in which case if it was him speeding then he will have to admit that, but like i said, he really doesn't believe it was him! If there is a better photo and it is undeniably him, will he be able to barter and admit guilt for the speeding and ask for the other charge to be dropped - or are we past that stage now?
Also, he is not a registered keeper of this vehicle and I don't think he really has much responsibility for it - is that much of a defence in either charge? For the failing to provide charge, he has said that he did not receive any paperwork in the post. I know it seems highly unlikely to not receive three documents (the NIP, the reminder and the summons) and that will take some convincing. However, he definitely didn't, and the company owner didn't say anything to him either so he had no idea there was a problem.
They have had their neighbours post delivered to them by mistake on a number of occasions so his defense for this is essentially going to be a rebuttal of the presumption of service and therefore it was not practicable for him to respond as he didn't receive it.
Another house occupant, who is the person who deals with incoming post at home and is usually at home when it arrives, will come to court as a witness to back him up. It's been over two weeks since he made his declaration and plead not guilty and I gather the CPS have to re-serve all evidence in these situations, but we haven't received anything. Is that normal in this timescale? Should we chase them?
Do we chase the police up or contact CPS directly? There are also evidence documents referred to in the SJNP that we have not seen yet either. What do we do if we get to court and still haven't received it? Surely that's not a fair trial! Could it be dropped? What will happen at the trial?
Does he have to do opening and closing statements etc? What should be in them? Also, if he has evidence that he wants to submit, how does he do that before the trial? Sorry I have so many questions, thanks in advance!