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    • Update on this for you:   Quick reminder, I wrote to Ford Finance for the SAR, and I also wrote to Link (again) requesting a breakdown of the alleged debt and how it was calculated. I have since had two identical letters from Link at the beginning of October just saying I owe them £628.83, but nothing addressing the alleged debt calculation/explanation whatsoever.   At the same time as the above letters, I also contacted Experian to refute the default on my credit record that Link had placed there. Experian have emailed to say they contacted Link and have had no response from them within 28 days regarding this, so Experian have suppressed this information from my report.   The SAR reply from Ford Finance has arrived. The £628.83 charge shows on the SAR comprising as "£14.99 D/Charge" (whatever that is), and "XS mileage £612.84", apparently worked out pro-rata.   As ever, any advice or comments most gratefully received as to how to proceed.   Thanks.    
    • Ok, so I would just ignore demands from ARC for now.   See what they do over the next few weeks and keep us posted ...........
    • click create in the top red banner   dx  
    • ok but that doesn't give us dates.....  
    • DD cancelled roughly a month after they stopped taking payment. Last used the gym a day before they closed. Used it almost daily. 
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      If it was me I would send them all a CCA request.   I would bet that not one will provide the correct response and you can quite legally stop paying them until such time as they do provide a response.   Even when they do you should check back here as they mostly send dodgy photo copies or generic rubbish that has no connection with your supposed debt.
       
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I have recieved a notice from the revenue collection agency giving me the opportunity to report on my incident. I was at Marylebone station on my return leg (outbound went without incident). My ticket wouldn't go through the turnstyle (as is often the case). when I presented it to the railway staff I was questioned about the date I had entered on my Carnet ticket. I have a biro pen which does work on these tickets and to me the date was pretty clear.

Although I did not in any way change the date, my ticket was seized and I was given a warrant to travel/notice of ticket irregularity (after a fairly lengthy 'professional' debate i.e. no abusive language or threatening behaviour etc.).

The customer services department for chiltern railways undertook an investigation and they believe the date to have been changed also. The date on the Carnet ticket and date of travel was the 19th and the claim by chiltern railways was that I had changed the date to a 19 from an 11.

I expect to receive a summons. Can anyone offer any advice? It is my word against theirs and I have to reiterate here - I did not change the dates on the tickets after they had been entered prior to getting to the station platform.

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Firstly, it is not exactly 'their word against yours'. The ticket will be seen by the prosecution team, and potentially by 'the Court', it is 'real evidence'.

 

I expect that the first thing that will happen will be that Chiltern will write to you, giving you an opportunity to 'comment'. The Inspector clearly thought that the ticket looked 'altered', what we do not know is whether he can show that you were seen to travel on '11th' as well as '19th'.

 

There are forensic techniques that can be used to 'suggest' when something was written, however, they are very expensive tests, and I rather doubt that a railway would pay for them to be done on an 'altered ticket' matter.

 

How you react to the situation, and how 'Chiltern' behaves will depend on what the 'truth' of the case is. This is an open forum, not a confidential confessional, so we do not expect 'posters' to tell every pertinent fact.

 

Thoughts for you to contemplate in private are:

Did you alter the date?

Is it possible from CCTV that they can show you travelling on both dates?

Have you got a history of fare evasion that they can prove?

 

What do you want to happen with this case? You are entitled to stand and say 'I did not alter that date'. They may decide to take the case to Court, and you would need to be prepared to stand in Court and plead 'not guilty'. From what you have told us, I think that Chiltern would withdraw the case at that point. 'Expert' witnesses are expensive, and proving that sometime between 11th and 19th you altered '11' to '19' with the intention of defrauding the railway would be most uncertain. Unless they saw you travelling with that ticket on the 11th.

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The gates read the information encoded on the ticket. The gateline revenue staff will have seen that.

 

What code number did the machine display when the gate rejected your ticket?

 

There is a code for 'Previously used ticket'

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Thanks Wriggler7 for your comments - very interesting questions and comments.

I have already sent off my comments for review to the Revenue Protection Prosecution office (I probably would have changed the wording after reading previous posts from these forums but it was a reasoned argument not a rant!). I may well have travelled in on the 11th but this would have been under a seperate set of out/return Carnet tickets.

I think it's important to state that I did not intentionally alter the date of the ticket in any way which is why I am so frustrated with my situation i.e. it's possible at 6.30 in the morning when the ticket was written I may have overwritten a number to make it more legible (I've seen the thermal ticket related posts and trouble with writting on these tickets) but I have to be clear and say that my intention was never to alter the ticket date from a 1 to a 9 as has been claimed.

I had two opportunities to pass the gate when I was challenged. I was pig headed in that I knew I had not altered my ticket as was being claimed. The first time the ticket staff member said I had altered the ticket but he would let me through this time - I insisted I had not changed the date and the inspector then sought advice from another inspector. The second time was when I was told I should pay for a new ticket. Again I refused as I found some injustice in paying further for a ticket I had already purchased. Although in retrospect this seems the wrong approach (especially after reading some of the posts on this forum) I believed that as I had not made the alterations I would be let through and could make my complaints about the whole thing to the customer services department. I didn't think I would be facing potential court action or else I would have let it go at that stage.

I don't have any history of fare evasion and I've been travelling into London on Chiltern Railways for over four year now without incident.

I would like this case to just go away. Having read the posts in this forum I've been exposed to a whole new culture of public transport prosecutions. I can't see that the consumer is a winner in any of these cases. In my case although I am innocent of making the changes alleged the 'mud has been slung' and Chiltern Railways obviously believe they have a case against me. I hope the case is dropped by the Prosecution team. All I really have is the fact that I know I did not make the changes alleged. I am very careful with my carnet tickets taking two fresh tickets out the night before I travel and throwing away the used return in the evening (Saunderton station is unmanned).

Thanks Old-codJA for your comments - unfortunately I wasn't sharp enough to read the code when the ticket machine rejected the ticket. At the time of the incident there was no claim made that I had re-used the ticket it all focussed around the altering of the date on the Carnet ticket. As noted above I write the dates on the Carnet ticket in the morning at home prior to travel so it would have been the first time that the ticket would have been presented to the ticket machine.

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It sounds as though you have taken a reasonable line from what you say about your letter.

 

If a date appears to have been altered, the revenue staff are authorised to refuse to accept any ticket and should withdraw the ticket for further investigation.

 

There is a history of misuse of these type of tickets in some areas and it would be interesting to know why the gate rejected your ticket on that day.

 

As I have already said, there is a rejection code for 'previously used', but it is also possible that the revenue staff may have been conducting a special check of such tickets specifically because if the right software is in place, it is possible to set the gates to reject any ticket type for closer examination.

 

All you can do now is await their reply to your letter.

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One thing I will add is that it's up to Chiltern to prove your guilt and not vice versa, and they will need to prove to a court that you did alter the date, if you've done nothing wrong then stick with your guns but then thats your gamble not mine! good luck!

Views expressed in this forum by me are my own personal opinion and you take it on face value! I make any comments to the best of my knowledge but you take my advice at your own risk.

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  • 2 years later...

I've got a similar problem. I wrote the date on my ticket expecting to use it to travel back from London that night, but ended up staying in London, so used it the next day. I changed the date, but as I'd never used the ticket I thought it would be fine. When checked he said it had been changed, I said I'd never used the ticket before and that I couldn't as you can't go through the barriers. No I get this letter threatening court, even prison, which just seems so harsh and overblown. I'd never used the ticket, so thought I should be able to get one use out of it. I've gotta write down on that form and will just explain that, but it's annoying as they're much more informed on law issues and I have not real idea.

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It is possible to set the gates to reject any ticket type for closer examination.

Hmmm, don't know how I feel about that.

 

Similar to an alarm going set off manually in a shop as you try to walk out just to search you or something. Probably not really the same thing though (and off-topic soz).

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In simple, but factual terms,

 

ANY ticket that shows evidence of alteration, or is defaced in any way is not valid for travel.

 

I hate these tickets, but also know it's easy to be wise after the event

 

For others who may be reading this, the best thing to do if using carnet tickets of this type is;

 

1. Never date the ticket until just before you travel

2. Always date the ticket in ink, clearly marking day & month before boarding any train.

3. Do not alter dates after entering them under any circumstances

Edited by Old-CodJA
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Just a small insight to the more technical side,

 

Everytime you insert a ticket into a barrier, the device attempts to reads the content of the magnetic strip. If it is valid, it will (based on the TOCs settings), rewrite the magnetic strip indicating use, and return the ticket before opening the gate, or simply retain the ticket in the capture bin and then open.

 

What customers don't realise is that the CUBIC backend software has detailed information about EVERY ticket/pass/Oyster/ITSO etc that passes, or attempts to pass, through a gate.

 

That information primarily includes:

 

Time & Date of entry/exit

Time & Date & Place when/where ticket was issued

Time, Date & Place ticket was last used

Origin

Destination

Ticket number/ID

Expiry/Start Date

Passenger Status "Child, railcards etc"

CAPRI ticket code, (which can be identified as "Anytime/Off Peak/Carnet etc")

Various London Underground information (cross london indication etc)

If the ticket was rejected, what the "reason code" was

 

Therefore, in this case, I could simply go back to the data for the 11th and check if the ticket used in the gate on the 19th is identical by comparing the ticket number and other features. I could produce such a record as evidence. This is quite easy as it exports into an Excel database and lets me add filters etc.

 

If I was really keen, I could start running comparisons with other rail ticket databases like LENNON, but if I had to sit there and wait whilst it trawls through millions of records only to find out that the customer was lying - I would ensure my unhappiness was reflected in the case.

 

Of course, some tickets simply show as 07, 08 or 09 meaning I can't prove anything (electronically) because the magnetic strip was corrupt(ed). However, I suspect in the case of the OP, the gate did read the ticket and produced a rejected code, and the RPI made a decision initially on that basis.

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Yes, firstclassx's summary of the available technical ability of the system is spot-on.

 

However, the bottom line in relation to this thread is that having altered the ticket, you have invalidated it whether previously used or not I'm afraid.

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In simple, but factual terms,

 

ANY ticket that shows evidence of alteration, or is defaced in any way is not valid for travel.

 

After looking through the First Capital Connect website about the carnet tickets after receiving this letter, I've not actually seen anywhere it says the above, that alteration or defacing invalidates a ticket. In fact all I can find it saying is:

 

'You can use each train ticket once for one journey in the direction of travel printed on the ticket.' and

'Passengers MUST validate the ticket by completing the travel date in permanent ink in the boxes on the top of the ticket in the direction of travel they wish to travel before commencing their journey.'

 

Well as I'd not used my ticket the date before, the rules say I can use it once, so I changed the date to the following day so as to write the correct date of travel on there. No where does it say you cannot change the date.

 

So clearly I'm guilty of the date changing, but in believe my ticket was valid, and I'd not been trying to travel for free. Anyone know what they're likely to do when I reply telling them this?

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They will tell you that you're going to court!

 

Read the back of the carnet ticket. It informs you that the ticket is issued and used subject to the National Rail Conditions of Carriage applies.

 

Condition 23

If a ticket is damaged or altered

If a ticket has been damaged or has been tampered with or altered in any way, it is not

valid for travel [...]

 

Which ties in nicely with -

 

Byelaw 18

 

(1) In any area not designated as a compulsory ticket area, no person shall enter

any train for the purpose of travelling on the railway unless he has with him a

valid ticket entitling him to travel.

 

or they could go for Byelaw 20.

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  • 4 weeks later...

I had a query on this one firstclassx, i put the wrong (used carnet ticket) through a gate one morning as i have to keep my old ones to claim expenses back and in the stampede for the rush hour gates i mixed up the one i written out for that morning. to my surprise it went through, surely it should have rejected or alarmed? is the machine not capable of knowing it has been used already.

 

Just a small insight to the more technical side,

 

Everytime you insert a ticket into a barrier, the device attempts to reads the content of the magnetic strip. If it is valid, it will (based on the TOCs settings), rewrite the magnetic strip indicating use, and return the ticket before opening the gate, or simply retain the ticket in the capture bin and then open.

 

What customers don't realise is that the CUBIC backend software has detailed information about EVERY ticket/pass/Oyster/ITSO etc that passes, or attempts to pass, through a gate.

 

That information primarily includes:

 

Time & Date of entry/exit

Time & Date & Place when/where ticket was issued

Time, Date & Place ticket was last used

Origin

Destination

Ticket number/ID

Expiry/Start Date

Passenger Status "Child, railcards etc"

CAPRI ticket code, (which can be identified as "Anytime/Off Peak/Carnet etc")

Various London Underground information (cross london indication etc)

If the ticket was rejected, what the "reason code" was

 

Therefore, in this case, I could simply go back to the data for the 11th and check if the ticket used in the gate on the 19th is identical by comparing the ticket number and other features. I could produce such a record as evidence. This is quite easy as it exports into an Excel database and lets me add filters etc.

 

If I was really keen, I could start running comparisons with other rail ticket databases like LENNON, but if I had to sit there and wait whilst it trawls through millions of records only to find out that the customer was lying - I would ensure my unhappiness was reflected in the case.

 

Of course, some tickets simply show as 07, 08 or 09 meaning I can't prove anything (electronically) because the magnetic strip was corrupt(ed). However, I suspect in the case of the OP, the gate did read the ticket and produced a rejected code, and the RPI made a decision initially on that basis.

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This is the same as staff 'boxes' i.e. staff passes off their TOCs patch are for 48 hours, however there are a limited number given per year: you mess one up with the wrong date and you've lost it: no excuses or changes are permitted and if caught the least that will happen is the next blank box will be forfeited (crossed through) AND the correct date put into the next but one.

 

Not funny if you only get a few boxes but 'them's the rules'.

 

The worst can be that all of the families passes are withdrawn for good and the staff members job is at risk too!

 

The first item of equipment after a notebook we had RPI'S supplied with was a magnifying glass -simply because alterations made on staff passes/carnet tickets was/is rife and it was/is taken very seriously indeed.

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