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Hi,

I did a really stupid thing about 4 years ago. I wasnt in a very good place at the time. I was caught with a childs ticket before boarding the train. When questioned by the ticket inspector I panicked having never done anything like this before.

I didnt know my new address at the time, the ticket inspector came down on me like a ton of bricks and to be honest I was very scared of him and the situation I found myself in. I gave him my name and date of birth and my old address I had no forms of ID appart from a medical note which had my details on it. He took the ticket off me and told me I would recieve something in the post.

Obviously I never recieved anything as I was no longer at the address. I am so ashamed at my actions. I have read that if you do not respond to anything from them then they may prosecute in your absence.

I am in a very different place now, and feel that I must sort this matter out. I now have a child and husband. I would hate to think that this matter would stop us from taking our child on holiday, stop me from applying for certain jobs, hold my husband back due to my stupid action etc.

However I have no idea where to start. I have done lots of research however cannot find any answers. I had thought to ring the company and explain the situation, however I am affraid if they have dropped the case I may incriminate myself futher.Having left this for 4 years I feel that its not going to go in any favor of mine.

Obviously I am not wanting to get off with anything. I am perfectly willing/happy to pay any fines etc. I am of the understanding that I would recieve a fine and a criminal record, Im concerned about this as I have no idea what happened with this. I know what I did was terrible and would never ever do anything like that ever again. I no longer live in the uk either so it does make it even more difficult to sort this out. Any advice would be greatly appreciated.

Edited by hazelnuts

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Hello and welcome to CAG.

 

Well done you for facing up to this now and I hope the guys will be able to help you. Do you have any idea which magistrates' court might have heard the case? I think I read that you can ring them and find out what happened, although 4 years is quite a long time.

 

I expect the guys will be along over the course of the day.

 

My best, HB


Illegitimi non carborundum

 

 

 

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This is a difficult one. You seem to want to face up to this incident in your past as a matter of conscience and that is a laudable aim, but with this having happened so long ago and you now living abroad, the only answer that I can give in all honesty is that it is probably best left alone.

 

If you are determined to try to deal with it perhaps you can tell us which Rail Company it was and where you were reported, we can probably guide you to the right Court office to check the record.

 

If there is no record, it is clear that the TOC did not pursue a charge.

 

If there is a record of a case proven in absence, you will flag up with the Court that a fine and other financial penalties are outstanding.

Edited by Old-CodJA

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thank you for your replies, I am inclined to think you are probably right about just leaving it as I am now thinking I may just aggravate the situation. This happened at marleybone station so I would presume that it would be at marleybone magistrates ? Do the courts give out that kind of information over the phone.

 

It is a difficult one as I do want to face up to this, however Im afraid that I'l get the book thrown at me and am now imagining the worst. Prison etc.

 

Is that how it works they would convict in absence / not follow it up at all or would there be a warrant for arrrest etc.. I think I am over thinking the situation now.

 

The outcome I would hope for is that they would have convicted in absence, or not followed it up ( unlikely ) but I am concerned that they would want me to go to court which is something I would much rather avoid. however I think the only way would be to contact them and see.

 

thank you again

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Hi,

I after much deliberation on this situation, I do still find myself wanting to sort the situation out or at least want to know if I have a criminal record. I am unsure of who/where I should contact. I went through the barriers at marleybone station then a member of the train staff asked to see my ticket before boarding the train. It was a member of staff that worked in the station I believe. Where might this case have been held? The rail company that I intended to travel with was chiltern I believe. I feel compelled to sort this out as at some point in life Im sure that in a form or something Il have to answer do you have any criminal convictions and I wont know what to answer.. If we travel to america I wont know what to fill in or know even if I can travel at all. Its very easy to burry my head in the sand with it all but I feel that something like this isnt going to just go away. I am also very nervous about ringing a court to find out and ask about this as I tend to put my foot in it at the best of times. Any help would be a great help to me.. thank you

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Hi,

I after much deliberation on this situation, I do still find myself wanting to sort the situation out or at least want to know if I have a criminal record. I am unsure of who/where I should contact. I went through the barriers at marleybone station then a member of the train staff asked to see my ticket before boarding the train. It was a member of staff that worked in the station I believe. Where might this case have been held? The rail company that I intended to travel with was chiltern I believe. I feel compelled to sort this out as at some point in life Im sure that in a form or something Il have to answer do you have any criminal convictions and I wont know what to answer.. If we travel to america I wont know what to fill in or know even if I can travel at all. Its very easy to burry my head in the sand with it all but I feel that something like this isnt going to just go away. I am also very nervous about ringing a court to find out and ask about this as I tend to put my foot in it at the best of times. Any help would be a great help to me.. thank you

 

 

You could contact Marylebone Magistrates Court. Any case detected at Marylebone station would have been summonsed to that Court if the company proceeded

 

The problem that you might have if you go to the rail company is that I believe that Chiltern now use a different prosecuting agency than they did 4 years ago.

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ok thats briliant thank you OC. Do you have any advise as to what I would ask for, when I say it out loud '' hi im wondering if you can help me, I was caught fare evading four years ago, however never recieved any letters about it I was wondering if I was convicted in absense'' (sounds so silly)

 

What details might they need from me?

 

do you think it is likely that the company would have proceeded I was wondering under what grounds they may not proceed? on your original reply you did suggest that it may be best left alone ... I was wondering if there were any particular reasons why ?

 

I am extremely greatful for any of your advice thank you

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From a strictly technical point of view:

 

In your case, (assuming you actually had funds to pay), I assume that you would have been taken to court for both:

 

17. Compulsory Ticket Areas

(1) No person shall enter a compulsory ticket area on the railway unless he has with him a valid ticket.

(2) A person shall hand over his ticket for inspection and verification of validity when asked to do so by an authorised person.

 

(London Marylebone is a designated "Compulsory Ticket Area")

 

However, you may be pleased to know that as per Byelaw 24(1), no "penalty" applies to Byelaw 17 offence(s), although you can still be found guilty in court, convicted (record may appear on enhanced criminal record check) and ordered to pay costs circa £100.

 

Either way, this offence would not affect travel to America etc.

 

============However!!===============

 

The usual disposal for a Byelaw 17 breach is a £20 Penalty Fare. If this was an option at the time, did you refuse the Penalty Fare, or did you not have enough money to pay either the Penalty Fare or the fare to where you intended to go?

 

If you tried to board a train, and you didn't have enough money to get you to your destination then you could be looking at a more serious offence under Section 5(3a) of the Regulation of Railways Act 1889:

 


    "Travels or attempts to travel on a railway without having previously paid his fare, and with intent to avoid payment thereof..."

he shall be liable on summary conviction to a fine not exceeding...Level 3 (£1000) on the standard scale, or, in the case of a second or subsequent offence, either to a fine not exceeding Level 3 on the standard scale, or in the discretion of the court to imprisonment for a term not exceeding three months.

 

If this happened, you have a criminal record for a fraud related offence. This could potentially affect worldwide travel, but should certainly be declared.

 

=======So==========

 

Contact Marylebone Magistrate's Court for further information - if you intend on returning to the UK or going to a country with stricter visa requirements.

 

I have a feeling that contacting Aylesbury Magistrate's Court may be a very good bet if Marylebone can't find you on their system.

 

You may encounter another problem though. To get a "re-trial" you have to show (and make an oath under penalty of perjury) that you had no knowledge that proceedings were to take place. The reason you didn't (potentially) know was because you provided a false address to the railway employee. There are separate offences of failing to provide the correct name and address, either Sec.5(3c) Regulation of Railways Act 1889 or Byelaw 23(1).

 

Unless you really need to know, try and forget about it.

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Hello there.

 

I know there is a website called trustonline where you can check to see if you have a record and I believe it costs £4. Hopefully the guys on here will be able to confirm whether it deals with fare cases as well as CCJs.

 

My best, HB


Illegitimi non carborundum

 

 

 

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Hello there.

 

I know there is a website called trustonline where you can check to see if you have a record and I believe it costs £4. Hopefully the guys on here will be able to confirm whether it deals with fare cases as well as CCJs.

 

My best, HB

 

An excellent idea.

 

http://www.trustonline.org.uk/

 

It is indeed £4 per search.

 

It will show:

 

  • The name and address of the offender,
  • Details of the court and case number
  • The amount, date of conviction and date of registration.

 

HOWEVER:

 

If it was a Byelaw 17 conviction, the above is no good as no fine would have been imposed.

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Rght I see that I unfortunately fall into the second catogory as I at the time litteraly only had enough money to pay for the childs ticket that I had purchased. First offence and otherwise clean record up till this point. Its a long ridiculas story how i found myself in that situasion Im quite sure that it wouldnt help my case. I cant imagine that a retrial would give me any different outcome to what I may already have.

My partner has family in america and talks regularly about visiting them. I cant believe that I wont be able to go. He also talks alot about taking our child to disney land. There is also a chance that he may have to live there for 2 years due to work. Or indeed have to go back to work in the UK. I am also aware that you need a certificate of good conduct to live in other countries in europe...

You see there are a number of reasons that I should sort this out. It just feels like a nightmare to be honest. I never imagined that a thing as simple as train fare could effect the rest of your life. Dont get me wrong I know the severity of it now but fraud wow, All I wanted to do was get home. In all honesty Im feeling quite hopeless about it all now. Thank you all for your wonderfull words of wisdom, will try and sort this mess out... sorry to ask a silly question but just been on the link, do I put in the address I gave at the time I was stopped or current address ?

Edited by hazelnuts

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Rght I see that I unfortunately fall into the second catogory as I at the time litteraly only had enough money to pay for the childs ticket that I had purchased. First offence and otherwise clean record up till this point. Its a long ridiculas story how i found myself in that situasion Im quite sure that it wouldnt help my case. I cant imagine that a retrial would give me any different outcome to what I may already have.

My partner has family in america and talks regularly about visiting them. I cant believe that I wont be able to go. He also talks alot about taking our child to disney land. There is also a chance that he may have to live there for 2 years due to work. Or indeed have to go back to work in the UK. I am also aware that you need a certificate of good conduct to live in other countries in europe...

You see there are a number of reasons that I should sort this out. It just feels like a nightmare to be honest. I never imagined that a thing as simple as train fare could effect the rest of your life. Dont get me wrong I know the severity of it now but fraud wow, All I wanted to do was get home. In all honesty Im feeling quite hopeless about it all now. Thank you all for your wonderfull words of wisdom, will try and sort this mess out... sorry to ask a silly question but just been on the link, do I put in the address I gave at the time I was stopped or current address ?

 

Put the address you lived at when you would have been convicted.

 

I wouldn't be too sure about it banning you from USA, but it may be the case that you have to visit an embassy/consulate to arrange and discuss your visa (and criminal record), rather than you being able to use the visa waiver scheme.

 

The question you have to answer is:

 

“Have you ever been arrested or convicted for any reason in any country, even if the arrest did not lead to a conviction, or do you have a criminal record? Please note: the Rehabilitation of Offenders Act does not apply to U.S. visa law."

 

I'm not too sure on Immigration Law for the UK, never mind abroad, so somebody else would be better placed to help with that.

 

Do a check with TrustOnline, and come back with the results for us to discuss...

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It seems that there are some clear misunderstandings all round here.

 

It does not necessarily follow that any ticketing offence detected at London Marylebone will be a National Railway Byelaw 17 offence. It may be so, but if that is the case a Penalty Fare Notice will have been issued and the OP has not mentioned such a notice

 

It is possible that other Byelaw offences may be relevant or evident, but also just as likely that a Section 5 RRA [1889] offence may have been considered and not proceeded with.

 

"Trustonline" may help, though is not conclusive where such cases are concerned. If a S.5. RRA offence was charged, it should show up, but the record is only as good as the input process and 4 years ago it was not as efficient as it is now. It is not 100% now either.

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It seems that there are some clear misunderstandings all round here.

 

It does not necessarily follow that any ticketing offence detected at London Marylebone will be a National Railway Byelaw 17 offence. It may be so, but if that is the case a Penalty Fare Notice will have been issued and the OP has not mentioned such a notice

 

It is possible that other Byelaw offences may be relevant or evident, but also just as likely that a Section 5 RRA [1889] offence may have been considered and not proceeded with.

 

"Trustonline" may help, though is not conclusive where such cases are concerned. If a S.5. RRA offence was charged, it should show up, but the record is only as good as the input process and 4 years ago it was not as efficient as it is now. It is not 100% now either.

 

 

Well I have had a look at the website suggested, I have spent alot of time on google earth trying to figure out the number of the address oh dear one thing after another.

 

I was just wondering what an s.5. rra offence is? or how they decide what it may come under in my particular case what would you think it may have come under ? I was also wondering upon what grounds it may not have been proceeded with or how they may come to a decision to not proceed ?

 

thankyou all for taking time to help me with this its very much appreciated.

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Well I have had a look at the website suggested, I have spent alot of time on google earth trying to figure out the number of the address oh dear one thing after another.

 

I was just wondering what an s.5. rra offence is? or how they decide what it may come under in my particular case what would you think it may have come under ? I was also wondering upon what grounds it may not have been proceeded with or how they may come to a decision to not proceed ?

 

thankyou all for taking time to help me with this its very much appreciated.

 

"s.5 rra offence" means a criminal act (offence) committed contrary to Section 5 Regulation of Railways Act 1889.

 

The offence most likely to apply to you is number 5(3a), which states:

 

"If any person... travels or attempts to travel on a railway without having previously paid his fare, and with intent to avoid payment thereof... he shall be liable on summary conviction to a fine..."

 

As for the rest of your questions, you would need to speak to the railway operator.

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thank you all..

i checked the sight recomended but it came up with nothing for me however I dont think il be taking that as gospel ... will be looking into it futher and will update with any info.

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I know Im asking alot of questions, but before I begin to ring the court, I was doing some research and realised that the information I found i.e you may be prosecuted in absense if you ignore the summons ... Im not sure that this is applicable to me ...

The original letter to be sent (if any) would have been sent by the toc .. which obviously I never had and never responded to.. (my presumtion the old address would have responded no longer at this address ) My question is what would be the proceedure for this happening would they then forward this to court who would then send a summons? It only just hit me to think of that as I dont want to start chasing the wrong people for information. thanks

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I know Im asking alot of questions, but before I begin to ring the court, I was doing some research and realised that the information I found i.e you may be prosecuted in absense if you ignore the summons ... Im not sure that this is applicable to me ...

The original letter to be sent (if any) would have been sent by the toc .. which obviously I never had and never responded to.. (my presumtion the old address would have responded no longer at this address ) My question is what would be the proceedure for this happening would they then forward this to court who would then send a summons? It only just hit me to think of that as I dont want to start chasing the wrong people for information. thanks

If you genuinely had no knowledge of the case against you, you should file a statutory declaration with the relavent court to have the matter reheard.

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thankyou stigy, however im not sure if it would have even gone to the courts at the moment but if I do find that it has then I will certainly consider your suggestion. thanks

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I finaly remembered my exact address and looked on the trust online site under orders and judgements it came up with nothing registered just wondering if i should search fine defaults also ? How reliable is this site is it 100% or is it a bit mickey mouse ? In all honesty I've never looked at any of them before and dont know if to trust what it says and forget about it now or keep trying to dig into it futher...

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The site is 100% legitimate, but not 100% accurate.

 

I suspect searching against "fine defaults" may be a good idea?

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I searched under fines and defaults and it came up with nothing registered which leaves me in limbo, Its a shame that its not 100% accurate. Can anyone give their oppinion on the chances of this case being dropped, as they didnt have a proper form of ID from me obviously there was no response from the first letter if any was sent out. Im not sure were to go from here to be honest Im not really wanting to get in touch with the courts as im afraid it will open a can of worms if there is anything and after leaving it so long. Not sure where to go from here ..

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I suggest that the old saying 'Let sleeping dogs lie..' is very good advice in this case.

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I am inclined to agree really but to be honest it just keeps playing on my mind really. I was reading another post on here about someone who had received something in the post 5 years on who was indeed in a very similar situation who had moved house and not replied to any of the letters etc... so im thinking that this will eventualy catch up with me. I was wondering though if they decided to procecute in absense then the criminal record would start from then surely and you wouldnt be able to do a statutory decloration. Old-codja if i was to ring the court to find out about it would it be as simple as them saying yes you have a fine of bla bla and id be able to pay it over the phone or would this warrant futher investigation etc... I am also wondering if i have to do a SD or can you just say im happy to pay any fines as they stand im not interested in trying to have the case re-opened type of thing ?

Edited by hazelnuts

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I was reading another post on here about someone who had received something in the post 5 years on who was indeed in a very similar situation who had moved house and not replied to any of the letters etc... so im thinking that this will eventualy catch up with me.

 

It is possible that any conviction might catch up with any individual, but you seem to be assuming that this has happened and without confirmation of a conviction, it will be a case of trying not to be concerned. Remember another old saying 'No news is good news.'

 

I was wondering though if they decided to procecute in absense then the criminal record would start from then surely and you wouldnt be able to do a statutory decloration.

 

You are able to make a Statutory Declaration saying 'I did not know of the date of hearing and the charge against me until after a Court had begun to try the said information', but ONLY if there is a conviction on record.

 

Old-codja if i was to ring the court to find out about it would it be as simple as them saying yes you have a fine of bla bla and id be able to pay it over the phone or would this warrant futher investigation etc.
Possibly, but you don't have any guarantee that a case was heard at any particular Court. From your earlier posts it is most likely that any case would have been put before Marylebone Magistrates.

 

I am also wondering if i have to do a SD or can you just say im happy to pay any fines as they stand im not interested in trying to have the case re-opened type of thing ?
If there was a conviction it is very likely that there will have been further efforts to contact you and there may be additional charges.

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