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Platomey

Prosecuted by Tfl but CRB disclosure clean

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My girlfriend’s father works as a bus driver so she had a free travel card that she could use on the tube as well. I was caught using it and has now received a standard letter from LU asking me to provide my version of what happened.

 

When caught I was polite, courteous and co-operative and confessed straight away that it was my GF’s card. I also had my Oyster with me (which I showedt o the officer) so the case is pretty simple – I was trying to avoid the travel fare. I also admitted that I had travel earlier the same day (but then I used it because I had forgotten my Oyster at work and took my GF’s travel card – which was also recorded by the officer) so in total I made three “free” journeys before being caught. The print-out from my Oyster card though showed that I do use it regularly so hopefully this is a mitigating factor.

 

I am not going to deny the wrong doing and I already admitted my mistake to the officer and intend to do it again in due course. The question is how to approach the situation now to avoid the criminal record?

 

I will be writing to LU with a sincere apology and offer to settle out of court but what is the best way to do it?

 

1) to enclose a cheque for £200-£250

2) to ask for an out-of-court settlement and wait for their figure

3) or just quote a suggested fine figure in the letter and wait for their reply

 

I am just confused how to approach this in the best way. I was also thinking of trying to discuss it by phone but from other threads on this forum it sounds as a letter is a better option.

 

This is my first offence and I am desperate to avoid criminal record.

 

I would be grateful for any advice

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Hello there, welcome to the forum.

 

I expect the guys will be along later, day jobs permitting. I don't know enough about the system to advise you, but they will when they get here. Please bear with us until you get one of the regulars here.

 

My best, HB

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Illegitimi non carborundum

 

 

 

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Thanks HB!

 

I indeed need some advice with the letter. I think I will actually be sending a cheque straight away but I have two concerns:

 

1) What if the amount will be too low?

2) What if they think that I am just trying to bribe them with a cheque:?:

 

I have been thinking how to put the payment offer along with a cheque in a way that will not offend them. I think I will just refer to the revenue officer who said that there should be around £250 fine for this kind of offence.

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Thanks HB!

 

I indeed need some advice with the letter. I think I will actually be sending a cheque straight away but I have two concerns:

 

1) What if the amount will be too low?

2) What if they think that I am just trying to bribe them with a cheque:?:

 

I have been thinking how to put the payment offer along with a cheque in a way that will not offend them. I think I will just refer to the revenue officer who said that there should be around £250 fine for this kind of offence.

 

Hi Platomey,

 

I am not going to pretend that TfL will automatically agree to settle this case. The fraudulent misuse of special concessions is considered a serious breach of trust, but you can only try.

 

I suggest a letter along the following lines:

 

Dear Sirs,

 

Your reference:.....

 

I wish to offer an unreserved apology for my stupidity in attempting to save money by using my girlfriend's concessionary pass. I wish to stress that this was an irrational and uncharacteristic reaction to being under financial pressure at the time and the responsibility for this is entirely mine.

 

It would be unfair for this to reflect on my girlfriend, or her father in any way as I made the decision to take the card and to use it in an effort to save money

 

I have never been in trouble for anything of this nature before and I am very worried that prosecution would have a disproportionate effect on my future career as a result of this first offence.

 

I am asking you to allow me to protect my good name by accepting full payment of the unpaid fares and all of TfL reasonably incurred costs in order to settle this matter without court action.

 

I offer an unreserved apology to the company and staff concerned for my ill-advised action and I can assure you that I shall never again travel without a valid ticket.

 

Yours etc....

Edited by Old-CodJA
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Hi Platomey,

 

I am not going to pretend that TfL will automatically agree to settle this case. The fraudulent misuse of special concessions is considered a serious breach of trust, but you can only try.

 

I suggest a letter along the following lines:

 

Dear Sirs,

 

Your reference:.....

 

I wish to offer an unreserved apology for my stupidity in attemting to save money by using my girlfriend's concessionary pass. I wish to stress that this was an irrational and uncharacteristic reaction to being under financial pressure at the time and the responsibility for this is entirely mine.

 

It would be unfair for this to reflect on my girlfriend, or her father in any way as I made the decision to take the card and to use it in an effort to save money

 

I have never been in trouble for anything of this nature before and I am very worried that prosecution would have a disproportionate effect on my future career as a result of this first offence.

 

I am asking you to allow me to protect my good name by accepting full payment of the unpaid fares and all of TfL reasonably incurred costs in order to settle this matter without court action.

 

I offer an unreserved apology to the company and staff concerned for my ill-advised action and I can assure you that I shall never again travel without a valid ticket.

 

Yours etc....

 

Hi Old-CodJA,

 

Thanks very much for your suggested letter!

 

Do you think it would still be a good idea to enclose a cheque for around £200-£300 with the letter? I guess it just makes it slightly faster and easier for LU to accept it although I understand that this is not what their main concern would be in this case

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There certainly wouldn't be any harm in including a cheque made payable to Transport for London and leave things for 7 days or so before ringing them to see if your cheque has been accepted.

 

They are not obliged to accept it, or to settle an allegation of this nature without court action, but you can only try.

.

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I have written a letter (based on Old-CodJA’s example) that I intend to send to the prosecution office tomorrow. Could you please have a quick look and see if it's good enough. I am not sure how much detail I need to put into it but I hope that this will be enough. I am especially not sure about the underlined sentence so any feedback would be greatly appreciated.

 

 

Dear ,

 

 

Thank you for your letter with Reference …….

 

 

I wish to offer an unreserved apology for my stupidity in attempting to save money by using my girlfriend's concessionary pass. I wish to stress that this was an irrational and uncharacteristic reaction to being under financial pressure at the time and the responsibility for this is entirely mine. I fully understand that I have broken the rules and am truly remorseful.

 

 

It would be unfair for this to reflect on my girlfriend, or her father in any way as I made the decision to take the card and to use it in an effort to save money.

 

 

I had to travel to ….. station for an interview lunch time that day but unfortunately had forgotten my wallet with my Oyster card at work the day before. I live within walking distance of my work so I didn’t realise that I didn’t have my wallet with all my cash, credit cards and Oyster card until I had to leave my place. I was in a hurry so and decided to take my girlfriend’s travel card as I didn’t have another option. Later that day I travelled to …. university (where I am currently studying part-time and which is based near ….. Station) and since I still had my girlfriend’s card I stupidly decided to use it again.

 

 

I have never been in trouble for anything of this nature before and I am very worried that prosecution would have a detrimental and disproportionate effect on my future career as a result of this first offence. I am asking you to allow me to protect my good name by accepting full payment of the unpaid fares and all of TfL reasonably incurred costs in dealing with my misdemeanour so far in order to settle this matter without court action.

 

 

I cannot convey how apologetic I am and I hope that you will take into consideration my previous good character and the harmful effect that the court appearance could have on my future career prospects.

 

 

I have enclosed a cheque for £300 to cover the costs and the payment of the evaded fare. This is the maximum that I can pay and I truly hope this will be enough.

 

 

As you can see from my Oyster card report I regularly use it and I can assure you that I shall never again travel without a valid ticket for which I have paid.

 

 

I look forward to hearing from you.

 

 

Yours sincerely,

Edited by Platomey

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I am also a foreign citizen and I genuinely didn't know that it is taken soseriously here in the UK. Do you think it's worth adding this detail in the letter toLU? If so, would I need to add a photocopy of my passport (and maybe a studentcard)? I am just not sure how much detail and paper they will be prepared to read and review

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I am also a foreign citizen and I genuinely didn't know that it is taken soseriously here in the UK. Do you think it's worth adding this detail in the letter toLU? If so, would I need to add a photocopy of my passport (and maybe a studentcard)? I am just not sure how much detail and paper they will be prepared to read and review

 

 

I genuinely don't think that would help in your case. I believe that you have read one of the other threads and this is a good illustration why every case is dealt with on it's own merit.

 

In your case you were using a cocessionary staff dependent's pass. These are clearly indicated as valid for use ONLY by the person to whom they are issued and most include a photo identity card. Your original post states that you already admitted your misdemeanour to the reporting inspector.

 

Bear in mind that the company are not obliged to accept your offer to settle this. They could simply send your cheque back and proceed if they wish to do so. I think the letter you have put together is the best chance you have of getting them to accept.

 

This kind of fraudulent misuse is considered a very serious breach of trust and I don't think it will help to change your story. Your posts make clear that you knew you were doing wrong.

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IMO, TFL will prosecute.

PLus, your girlfriends father may be spoken to about the incident.

TBH, you have broke the law and deserve to be punished.


All I ask is to be treated fairly and lawfully.

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I am also a foreign citizen and I genuinely didn't know that it is taken soseriously here in the UK.

 

Is theft legal in your country? COOL.

So it's OK for me to move there and take a motor away? Cheers pal. I'll have yours.

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This is another case where the OP is totally remorseful after being caught and on here seeking advice. Amazing! I wonder how long he would of carried on using the pass had he not got caught? Also, if the GF knew the OP was using the pass then it should be withdrawn.

 

I applaud Old Codja for giving the time of day to these types of cases, but seriously do these people deserve our help? I wonder sometimes...

 

Please Note

 

 

The advice I offer will be based on the information given by the person needing it. All my advice is based on my experiences and knowledge gained in working in the motor and passenger transport industries in various capacities. Although my advice will always be sincere, it should be used as guidence only.

 

I would always urge to seek face to face professional advice for clarification prior to taking any action.

 

Please click my reputation 'star' button at the bottom of my profile window on the left if you found my advice useful.

 


Please Note

 

The advice I offer will be based on the information given by the person needing it. All my advice is based on my experiences and knowledge gained in working in the motor and passenger transport industries in various capacities. Although my advice will always be sincere, it should be used as guidence only.

 

I would always urge to seek face to face professional advice for clarification prior to taking any action.

 

Please click my reputation 'star' button at the bottom of my profile window on the left if you found my advice useful.

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SPOT ON MR. S. SAM. Absolutely SPOT ON. My thoughts exactly.

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As suggested by Old-CodJA I sent an apologetic letter to TFL prosecution office and enclosed £300 cheque. They sent it back to me straightaway replying that I need to wait for the decision. Yesterday I received courtsummons to appear before the Magistrates in late November. Do you think it isstill worth trying to send Tfl another letter offering to settle out of court?I guess if they rejected it once they are determined to prosecute me, what doyou think? Also, is there any way I can escape criminal record in this caseif I am taken to the court?

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As suggested by Old-CodJA I sent an apologetic letter to TFL prosecution office and enclosed £300 cheque. They sent it back to me straightaway replying that I need to wait for the decision. Yesterday I received courtsummons to appear before the Magistrates in late November. Do you think it isstill worth trying to send Tfl another letter offering to settle out of court?I guess if they rejected it once they are determined to prosecute me, what doyou think? Also, is there any way I can escape criminal record in this caseif I am taken to the court?

 

I made clear throughout this thread that TfL and the TOCs take this kind of fraudulent misuse of concessionary passes very seriously and did say that they might send your cheque straight back.

 

I never condone travel fraud, but have suggested the only way that you were likely to lessen the penalty in my view. Prosecution in a case like this is justified.

 

It will not be what you want to hear I'm afraid, but if you are convicted of 'fare evasion' by a court, you will gain a criminal record.

 

You could engage a solicitor to look at the papers, but my guess is that s/he will advise you to plead guilty and then you will still get a record, will have a fine & costs to pay and will also have to pay the solicitor.

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TFL rarely settle out of court, they are basically a government owned service so have no interest in recieving money from offenders.


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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So what's my ideal course of action - plead guilty and then wait to hear from the court? Do I need to turn up for the hearing or it doesn't make any difference whatsoever? I heard that it's possible to ask the prosecutor that they charge me with a caution or ask the magistrate to impose an absolute discharge (which is not a criminal conviction). Have you heard anything about it?

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As suggested by Old-CodJA I sent an apologetic letter to TFL prosecution office and enclosed £300 cheque. They sent it back to me straightaway replying that I need to wait for the decision. Yesterday I received courtsummons to appear before the Magistrates in late November. Do you think it isstill worth trying to send Tfl another letter offering to settle out of court?I guess if they rejected it once they are determined to prosecute me, what doyou think? Also, is there any way I can escape criminal record in this caseif I am taken to the court?

 

So what's my ideal course of action - plead guilty and then wait to hear from the court? Do I need to turn up for the hearing or it doesn't make any difference whatsoever? I heard that it's possible to ask the prosecutor that they charge me with a caution or ask the magistrate to impose an absolute discharge (which is not a criminal conviction). Have you heard anything about it?

 

Yes,you do have to turn up at court on the date and time they stated,If you dont they will issue a Warrant for your Arrest,with or with out Bail....

 

Go to the Magistrates before the hearing and ask to speak to the duty solicitor and discuss your case with the Solicitor....

 

My own view is after reading your posts your best bet is to plead "GUILTY" and let the Solicitor plead your case with the Magistrates....


Just say No to 0870 and 0845 Numbers,Use

http://www.saynoto0870.com/search.php

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No, I don't have to go to court and it's called "Plea of Guilty in Absence". It says so in the letter that I received from the court. Interestingly it mentions that the court may decide not to accept my plea:?:Not quite sure what is thepoint of that but I think this is not likely as the matter is very straightforward.

 

So it's my decision whether or not to attend the hearings - the question is if there is any point in doing so and if it can somehow soften the outcome. I have read here on the forum that it is possible to speak to the prosecutorbefore the hearings to try and settle out of court at the last minute but in my case it's unlikely to happen given the misuse of Freedom pass, rather than simple avoidance of the fare.

Edited by Platomey

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Yes,you do have to turn up at court on the date and time they stated,If you dont they will issue a Warrant for your Arrest,with or with out Bail....

 

Go to the Magistrates before the hearing and ask to speak to the duty solicitor and discuss your case with the Solicitor....

 

My own view is after reading your posts your best bet is to plead "GUILTY" and let the Solicitor plead your case with the Magistrates....

 

You can attend and ask to see the the duty solicitor, but bear in mind s/he will not represent the defendant in this case unless there are very special circumstances.

 

This is not a matter that normally qualifies for legal aid.

 

It can be beneficial to attend and put your 'guilty' plea in person, apologise to the court and rail operator. Showing remorse personally in this way will normally attract the maximum credit.

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Offering a check so promptly of such an amount would/could suggest to me the girlfriends card has been used wrongly for some time !!!!!!

Edited by watchinginvestigation2011

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Hi,

 

I was prosecuted by Tfl for using someone else's Freedom pass last October. As far as I understood from this forum and other sources this is a recordable offence and results in a criminal record. However, I have just received my Basic Disclosure Certificate form Disclosure Scotland and it is clean with no record on it!

 

Do you think it is a mistake and I should check somewhere else? Also, should I now tick box "Convictions" on any employment forms or not?

 

I think I was prosecuted under "S. 5 (3) (a) of the Regulation of Railways Act 1889 as amended by Section 84 (2) of the Transport Act 1962 and Section 18 of the British Railways Act 1970"

 

Any input would be highly appreciated.

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Hi,

 

I was prosecuted by Tfl for using someone else's Freedom pass last October. As far as I understood from this forum and other sources this is a recordable offence and results in a criminal record. However, I have just received my Basic Disclosure Certificate form Disclosure Scotland and it is clean with no record on it!

 

Do you think it is a mistake and I should check somewhere else? Also, should I now tick box "Convictions" on any employment forms or not?

 

I think I was prosecuted under "S. 5 (3) (a) of the Regulation of Railways Act 1889 as amended by Section 84 (2) of the Transport Act 1962 and Section 18 of the British Railways Act 1970"

 

Any input would be highly appreciated.

 

I'd advise honesty. If it doesn't show on a CRB and you've declared it, it can't come back to haunt you. An employer might not disregard you for a previous (minor) conviction, but may well dismiss you if it later comes out that you've lied on your application. Do you want to risk spending your working career worrying if/when it might come out?

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An employer might not disregard you for a previous (minor) conviction, but may well dismiss you if it comes out that you've lied on your application.

 

BazzaS,

 

I think technically I am not lying as it looks like I just don't have a conviction at all. I am not a specialist but I may have been conditionally discharged by the Court because of pleading guilty at the first opportunity and also some other mitigating factors which I included in the letter to the court (I wasn't present at the actual hearing).

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You are required to declare the conviction if asked for a period of.5 years from the date of conviction.

If you do not & the employer finds out you can be dismissed and/or prosecuted for gaining a pecunary advantage by not declaring as required or even worse, under S76 of POCA.

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