I have not posted in a few years.
Since then I have had to retire due to ill health after suffering further bouts of severe acute clinical depression
and being diagnosed with pretty severe bipolar affective disorder.
Counselling and medication have helped to a large extent as has the love and support of my family who suffered from my illness as well.
I will post on that in another thread.
The hassle caused by both Harrow and Newlyn has severely impacted on my health with further refeerals to cpn, etc and changes to medication.
This relates to a catalogue of errors and breaches of best practice, guidance, maladministration and breaches of legislation in respect of PCN's, bailiff's.
It has led to me investigating the current profit share contract which Harrow Borough Council has with it's 2 firms of bailiffs
and correspondence with Eric Pickles, together with my local MP.
It has led to Formal complaints,
unanswered formal complaints,
FOI requests and
DPA or more accurately, Subject Access Requests.
(I had great experience of them on here when helping folk with bank/ credit card charges etc)
This is quite a long, but entirely true story and contains many issues which I am pursuing or intend to pursue.
I hope it may help others.
I intend that Harrow and Newlyn take notice and I will take action using powers available to me to redress the situation
I have faced/ am facing so that it does not happen to another innocent person.
Or, if it does, there remains a record of what happened to me and what action I took, the obstacles I encountered,
the lies I was told, the issues raised,
the mis-use of local authority powers and
the mis-use of bailiff powers (no surprise there).
Fortunately, some new guidance has recently been issued by the OFT in respect of bailiffs and PCN's
and change is underway in respect of CCTV in respect of PCN's.
Hopefully, the days of motorists being cash cows for local authorities and others is not too far away.
Back to basics.
I bought a high specification BMW 730 at auction, paying cash.
I had experience of buying second hand vehicles before and the auction house was reputable.
I was the proud owner of a car that was several years old and I had purchased it at a bargain price.
I had a full service history and the car was gleaming.
I went home to quickly arrange motor insurance and made arrangements to register the car in my own name.
I had undertaken a check on the car, prior to bidding, ensuring that there was no credit outstanding on the car
and confirming the vehicles history which matched the MOT's, service history, etc, etc.
Everything was fine for 5/6 months.
The car was mechanically fine and we were really enjoying driving it, but
over the course of 10-12 weeks I received about 14-16 PCN's from
Harrow Borough Council,
Tesco at Brent and
Checking this site, the PCN notices were compliant and had been updated to redress recent issues such as appealing under different conditions, etc.
I had not been to London and neither had the vehicle.
We live just about as far as it is possible to get from London within the UK.
It was evident that someone had cloned my registration/ number plates to avoid London Congestion Charge and Parking fees.
Some even related to spending 10/11 hours at Brent Tesco whilst the person traveled by tube into London itself.
I had not been to London in 6/8 years and even then it was by plane.
The PCN's supplied showed images of the incidents recorded by camera or CCTV,
including driving down bus lanes, in congestion charge areas, double yellow lines etc.
I saw the evidence myself when I entered the details onto the various web sites when investigating the matter .
In some cases, the vehicle was entirely different ie a red Vauxhall Astra van,
in others , it showed a different colour and model of BMW with different distinguishing features.
In one case, in respect of Harrow Borough Council, the charge related to a different coloured BMW, 300 series, but with continental plates.
Firstly, I checked what to do.
The advice, particularly from the DVLA & the web was to report the matter to the police.
I took every ticket to the local police station and parked my car outside.
The PC was excellent, came outside to check the car, confirming the VIN against registration documents
and against the details provided on each PCN.
He even congratulated me on my purchase saying that he might be tempted to do something similar.
Anyway he decided that a crime had been committed against me and the DVLA and provided me with a crime reference number
and documentation to state that I had reported every PCN detail as a crime which was being investigated by the Police.
Due to the distance from London, Police Scotland would forward a crime report to the Metropolitan Police and London Transport Police
who were the respsonsible police authorities .
In respect of each PCN a copy of crime reference report, various pictures of my car detailing distinguishing features, etc and a copy of the reg document V5?
Most of this had to be done on line and I encountered serious problems in trying to communicate with an actual person,
particularly as regards Harrow Borough Council.
They really have some horrendous customer service practices and must rate as one of the worst and most uncaring local authorities going.
A google search will confirm this as will searches on previous FOI requests, their performance figures, bench marking etc, etc.
I received what I thought was reassurance that all action would be cancelled and I have proof of that in respect of every ticket.
However, lurking in the background, Harrow had not cancelled the PCN and instead, had escalated the charge from £65 to £130.
Note that Harrow had now made 3 fundamental errors.
a) processing a foreign registration plate on their system which happened to match my UK plate, in the first place
b) not matching the information they received from the DVLA which showed that the vehicle details were entirely different from mine- model and colour etc
c) not cancelled the PCN as agreed when I had submitted the required evidence and they had agreed to ditch the PCN.
They had also admitted to an error in processing the PCN in the first place due to the continental style numbering of the plate,
although the numbers and letters matched, which was a chance in many millions. I had error confirmed by them in in writing.
We were now engaged on a collision course and they had encountered someone who would not back down
and who would investigate every avenue to seek retribution to ensure their mistakes did not occur again.
I also became aware of their tender services issue in 2012, details of the contract documents were available on their web site.
I read press articles from a Fern Silverio who wanted his Council to get a share of the bailiffs profit's.
I read various press articles and I thought this contract was unfair and would only encourage more PCN's to be issued against innocent victims
and that the contract encouraged bailiffs to seek ways of upping their costs to cover the cost of the kickback to Harrow Borough Council.
Harrow then went to it's local court, which is in England, seeking the powers to recover the "supposed" debt from me.
It compounded it's earlier mistakes.
There was no debt outstanding by me, they had confirmed this in writing yet, I now had a court judgement against me in an English Court
when I lived in Scotland under the jurisdiction of Scottish Courts.
Fast forward and I receive a Notice of Seizure from Newlyn PLC, amounting to over £200.
I phone Newlyn and email them giving them all the evidence.
I play by the rule book. But, why oh why, did I do that?
Of course, they don't listen and neither do Harrow who I also contact.
Newlyn claim they, as bailiffs can come in at any time with a removal van to seize and disdain my personal goods and sell at auction.
Now, I point out that I have severe mental health illness- no impact.
I point out that bailiffs have no powers in Scotland and that the contents of their letter are distressing, damaging, etc, etc, etc.
I point out our different legal and court systems.
I also point out that only Sheriff Officers appointed by a Scottish Court can handle debt matters
and that in any case, one of the first Acts of the devolved Scottish Parliament was a private members Bill by then SMP,
Tommy Sheridan which led in 2001 to the abolition of poinding and warrant sales- the then Scottish equivalent of English laws
relating to Seizure and Removal.
I point out that they are guilty of misrepresentation in respect of their powers.
I again inform them of the damage to my health and that I have not received an itemised invoices and what is the invoice made up off?
My attempts at education fail. As I knew they would, but now, I am focused on a longer term objective.
However, perhaps these guys down sarf, think they can have a laugh on me by sending me a Notice of Removal on Hogmanay
- probably thought my energies would be centered on festivities.
This time the invoice is for £450 and it' still not broken down as required.
But a further error is made, as this time they up the anti, by posting it to "the occupier" and not me personally.
This is potentially catastrophic as my mother in law suffers from dementia and I act as her carer.
What would have happened if she had opened the letter, or my wife or children?
Newlyn had made a further mistake and you all know what that was, as do I.
It was clearly designed to intimidate and misrepresent their powers.
Emails are sent and phone calls made.And remember, I am innocent.
They are acting in error, compounding their errors and making every mistake going.
Formal complaint process has produced nothing from Harrow Borough Council. No action taken by Newlyn PLC.
Post 2 will update further. Ready for the roller coaster. Fasten the seat belts.