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I'll try and make this as short as possible.

 

In December 2011 I was travelling from Borehmwood to Kentish town and then on into town for a job. I topped up my oyster with £20 and touched it to the pad and walked through the barriers. Once on the train I was approached by a "Revenue Protection Inspector" who asked to see my ticket. I handed my oyster card over and expected it back straight away. It was kept from me and I was told that I had skipped the fare. I explained how I'd topped it up and even touched it on the way into the station.

 

I was given 2 options: 1- Pay the fare 2- Pay a fine.

 

I said "Fine I'll pay the fare" as in to say im happy to pay the fare if the machine hadnt taken it properly.

 

The First Caiptal Connect man then started taking my details. Confused I asked why. He said that I'd asked for the fine and not to pay the fare. I explained what I meant but his english wasnt very good.

 

After being told that I couldnt now just pay the fare as he had "already started the paper work" I was annoyed but started to give my details until we got to my stop. He still had my oyster and refused to hand it back. He agreed to continue on the platform at Kentish Town, where I provided my address, and all other details. I even spelt my name for him 4 times using J-Juliette O-Oscar E-Echo L-Limo etc etc etc.

 

After another 5 or so minutes he was still refusing to let me leave so i called the police stating that I was being "illegally detained" on the platform. At this point he started getting a bit agitated and angry with me (i was also getting ****ed off with him) and I tried taking back my O-card. Eventually (after kicking up a loud fuss on the platform) I grabbed my card and walked off.

 

I have just recieved a Court Summons in the name of JOAL SEFOLD (not my name at all). The summons states I was aggresive (physically and verbally) and refused to pay my fare. As a result they are asking me to pay the fare, the fine and court costs on top (a little bit unfair).

 

The Court Summons is dated 24.01.2012 and gives me 7 days to respond before they go ahead and try me in absence. It was recieved on 21.02.2012.

 

My Names are wrong (even on his original note pad) the timings are wrong(can be proven by meta data on the photo I took).

 

What should I do???

 

I'm very tempted to send it back as "return to sender NOT KNOWN AT THIS ADDRESS"

 

I would appreciate any help Thankyou.

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According to your original post, the incident actually occurred less than three months ago. The TOC have six months in which to lay any charge.

 

You can send it back marked 'Not Known' as you suggest as it isn't addressed to you, but don't be surprised if it comes back again, correctly addressed at a later date with a further charge.

 

The TOC have six months from the date of the offence to lay the evidence before a Court. If the Oyster is registered to you at your address as you said, it will not take a genius to complete the necessary investigation.

 

I don't believe that it is the purpose of this forum to encourage people to be dishonest.

 

Agreed, the TOC staff should have recorded details correctly, but if they can show that you failed to co-operate with the inspector, there is no reason why they should not start again.

 

How inaccurate are the timings that you refer to. If it is simply a case of a minute or two, the inspector will have probably have been referring to his own watch and a couple of minutes fast or slow is not going to alter anything.

 

One thing intrigues me about this one. You say that you called the Police. What happened then? What were you told by Police?

 

If there was a problem with your ticket you were not being 'illegally detained' as you put it. You make no mention of being arrested. You are not illegally detained if you are simply being questioned by an inspector about a ticket irregularity.

 

If you called the Police and gave your location and then as you say 'Eventually (after kicking up a loud fuss on the platform) I grabbed my card and walked off.' it is quite likely that a Police Log of the incident has been made. Your mobile telephone number will have been recorded on that confirming that you were the person who made the call and therefore it is reasonable to suggest that you were the person reported. The TOC might well ask for any information from these records to support their action.

 

By your own admission, any CCTV footage that might have been retained will show you making a loud fuss and making off without payment, which is probably what the inspector has reported.

 

So, according to your posts above, the TOC have the following:

 

Your registered Oyster number and a report that your Oyster card was held by a traveller who had not paid the fare due

Your correct date of birth given by that traveller

Your correct address given by that traveller (The summons reached you.)

 

They quite probably have access to evidence that suggests you were at the scene at the time of the incident, your mobile telephone number being recorded in relation to the incident, a Police log of you being stopped by an inspector because you rang them and you claimed that you were 'illegally detained' by an inspector at the material time and at the location of the incident.

 

And a false name.

Edited by Old-CodJA
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I'm not trying to be dishonest. I offered to pay the fare on the train 2 stops after I got on when the ticket guy took my oyster. I even offered to pay the fare when he was holding me on the platform at Kentish Town.

 

The timings are pretty wrong. I took the photo on my phone as I was walking off at 3:11. the statement from the ticket inspector shows he first stopped me after 3:15, by which point I was already on the tube network.

 

When I spoke to the police they mentioned that he had n right to hold me against my will on the platform and that seeing as I was in a train station it was a matter for the BTP. The reason I said he was "illegally detaining" me was due to his persistance in not letting me even leave the platform where we got off the train. I tired to walk to the ticket office to get this sorted out and he refused saying that he had authority to hold me on the platform. which as far as I can make out from research online he doesn't.

 

Do you know how long they are likely to hold the CCTV for? Because I could possibly go to my local station where I got on and retrieve the footage of me touching my oyster card on the barrier to prove I wasnt trying to skip the fare.

 

Thankyou for helping me.

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I'm not trying to be dishonest.

 

My point is that it would clearly be dishonest to say you know nothing about it when you are giving us a full description of the incident. It would be true only to say that the name on the summons does not live at your address.

 

The timings are pretty wrong. I took the photo on my phone as I was walking off at 3:11. the statement from the ticket inspector shows he first stopped me after 3:15,
My point exactly, the inspector may say 'I am sorry, my watch may have been four minutes fast, I was not aware of that and recorded the time shown on my timepiece.' No Magistrate is going to throw a case out for that.

 

When I spoke to the police they mentioned that he had n right to hold me against my will on the platform and that seeing as I was in a train station it was a matter for the BTP.

 

Completely and utterly wrong. It is a matter for the TOC Revenue Protection Inspector.

 

At the point you refer to making the call to Police, if you had given your correct name and address and had confirmed any query with the inspector for his report, you were free to go. He could have retained the Oyster, but in practice they rarely do these days because it is easy to get a print out of last 8 weeks usage from the monitoring system.

 

It is NOT a matter for BTP unless the inspector decides to call for their assistance for some reason. It may help you to know that P.A.C.E trained R.P.I's do have a power of arrest under Section 5.2 of the Regulation of Railways Act (1889), but given the scenario you have explained, this would not have been appropriate.

 

It is a rarely used power because other liabilities come into play as soon as an inspector exercises the right. He may have been asking you questions that you did not want to stop and answer, but if you were not told that you were under arrest and why, then you were not detained.

 

You admission that you were shouting, grabbed the Oyster and made off doesn't help your case at all in my opinion.

 

The reason I said he was "illegally detaining" me was due to his persistance in not letting me even leave the platform where we got off the train. I tired to walk to the ticket office to get this sorted out and he refused saying that he had authority to hold me on the platform. which as far as I can make out from research online he doesn't.

 

It was for the inspector to deal with the matter and had you gone to the booking office along with the inspector, booking office staff would have told you so. He had the authority to say to any booking clerk who you approached 'I am dealing with this matter as a ticket irregularity'. The booking clerk would be obliged to leave him to it. That isn't to say you couldn't complain, but it is the RPI's role.

 

Do you know how long they are likely to hold the CCTV for? Because I could possibly go to my local station where I got on and retrieve the footage of me touching my oyster card on the barrier to prove I wasnt trying to skip the fare.

 

CCTV will not prove that you touched in and were given authority to proceed.

It will only show that you passed a barrier and put something on the pad.

 

The record of your Oyster swipe will be recorded on the system and you can apply for a print out from the Oyster monitoring system. That print out will also show if your swipe failed for any reason.

 

As this happened in December you might be hard pressed to get any evidence that helps you. They only keep accessible records for 8 weeks so unless it was Christmas week I think you might be out of luck.

Edited by Old-CodJA
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