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TFL misuse Freedom Pass == more than once - ** SETTLED BEFORE COURT **

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Hi everybody,

 

I was caught in early November using my father's freedom Pass in the middle of my return journey (I used the Undeground zone 1- travelling to zone 4)

 

I stayed with the lady Revenue inspector around 30 min and she took all the details needed against me in the court

(is the station where you are going near your house, how tall I am, what I am wearing...).

 

At the end:

she gave me to read the following written in a small paper:

“You do not have to say anything. But, it may harm your defence if you do not mention when questioned

something which you later rely on in court. Anything you do say may be given in evidence.”

 

She took all the correct answers except how many times I have used the Pass.

I said just once (and how stupid I was, I said...you have camera..something like that).

 

Few days later I got a letter from TFL to explain/give comments.

 

Thank you so much for your help through this forum,

I read few threads and I responded back with an apology letter + my supported documents + offer to pay the reasonable costs.

 

However I said "I have not done so before" in the letter.

 

Few days later, I got another letter saying:

" .............

...............

In relation to your actions you state

"I have not done so before".

I have analysed the recent travel usage on the Freedom Pass withdrawn from you.

The pattern of usage would appear to indicate that the incident was not a one-off.

This is of concern to TFL.

 

As it currently stands TFL do not wish to accept your offer of a payment as a closure to the matter.

I must point out that legal proceedings may still be taken against you.

.....................

Firstname Lastname

Investigator/prosecutor"

 

OK, now it is true that I used same time and days on more occasions. but I did not confess that.

Did they use CCTV to prove against me for the previous ones please?

 

This is my first time I was caught, I regret my actions.

I have a clean record so far and I am just now aware that what I have done is a very serious matter that leads to a criminal record,

I really didn't know before. I am so scared and can't stop thinking about the matter.

 

I am looking for a job but I can't concentrate properly, already graduated but got visa problems to start work before.

 

I want to avoid criminal record please.

 

I got that letter around 20 days ago but I didn't respond back,

1) do you know what shall I do please?

Shall I contact the person dealing with my case,

shall I be honest in everything?

or shall I just wait for their response?

 

2) If the option is to contact the person dealing with my case, what shall i say to him/her please?

I know I will be trembling answering any questions..

.i don't like to make my case worse as well.

..give some evidence against me.

 

How long does it take for TFL to prosecute someone please?

 

3) Is it another big mistake to lie via correspondence.

Shall I have to rectify my double mistake by calling the concerned person or via post (in case I need it later at court).

 

I know credibility is important...well it is done now and what shall I do next please.

 

I am really confused, as when contacting solicitors..

.some they said I have to wait for TFL response..

.some they said I have to react asap and try to settle out of court..

..one he said I can not be your solicitor because I lied via correspondence (just frightening).

 

I am very very sorry for my actions, I regret it and I didn't know the last bad consequences.

 

I don't know the best thing to do and how and what to say.

 

..Is there any chance for my case to settle out of court please.

 

Even though I am feeling that I am just waiting to get a summons to go to court.

 

Thank you

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If your card is chipped (like your ank card) then every transaction will have been recorded to a central computer

 

Date, time, station details on entering and leaving the tube but ... It does not prove it Was you using it unless they actually see the card number and you putting it through the gate equipment.

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I believe they could check their CCTV, QK, if they believe the offence is serious.

 

Lilya, please wait for other views, but I think maybe you should ring the person who wrote to you whilst they haven't decided what to do. You can negotiate right up to the court date.

 

Can you give us an idea of what you said in your letter?

 

HB


Illegitimi non carborundum

 

 

 

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how long have you been using this card please..the truth....

 

do you hold or have you held any other card that you could/should have used in your own right.

 

the lying in the statement and the letter could be your downfall here

though they are not indicating out of court is not out the window

 

that's the way I read it..

 

dx


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Thank you all for your reply.

 

In response to your queries.

In fact my father got his freedom pass few months ago...fresh card:)

But I used it in a multiple occasions...around 3 days a week.

 

I mean if I will contact them, I don't know shall I confess all??

 

It is a good strategy to wait for their response, let them study my case. but it could be a risk if I will receive the summons few days before the court date.

 

I don't like to ask for settlement at the court, I might not go and just pay whatever they will charge + of course the criminal record.

 

How long does it take to get their response please?

 

I am waiting for other views as well.

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@ honeybee13

'' Can you give us an idea of what you said in your letter?''

 

Of course I admitted my fault + apology

and I mentioned my personal circumstances:

1) I am unemployed looking for a job for several months now

2) I am in bad financial circumstances -- I sent my bank statements

3) my career prospects, visa restriction to travel abroad if convicted.. already proved work abroad

4) Visa problems here in the UK in the future if convicted under Home Office regulation

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and you had no other card that you could have used in your name.

 

by many weeks..how many

 

please, its better we know the full extent of the usage..

 

no need to be cagey...


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@ dx100uk

'' do you hold or have you held any other card that you could/should have used in your own right. ''

 

I have PAY AS YOU GO cards, however when I was caught I just got one with some money that I did not use it for a couple of months. I think the inspector wrote down the number. This one it is a registered one in my name. Can they check something as well, they did not withdraw it from me. They just took my father's freedom pass.

 

I said her I lost my other PAY AS YOU GO card so I took my father freedom pass without telling him.

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for how many weeks were you usin the freedom pass ..truthful please

 

please, its better we know the full extent of the usage..

 

no need to be cagey...


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Thank you so much dx100uk for your answers.

 

Please do not push me to say exactly...as 1 week 2 or 3 weeks no difference (just cost/penalty calculation is the difference, not my process and how to proceed further now, why I am here in this forum...please).

 

I think the important mistake that I said I used ONCE, I should have said in more occasions (even not showing exactly). I have time to rectify if it is worth to do it now (waiting for advice please).

 

However the letter I received asked to give comments on that incident.

 

Does anybody please know how to proceed further in this stage? I much appreciate it.

 

I am waiting for other point of view.

 

Thank you in advance

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1,2,3 weeks makes ALL the difference.

 

 

it is very important for you to be very honest here upon the exact length of time you used the card .

 

 

as you have already realised, from the pass , they can see what.how.when. the card was used and the pattern of travel.

 

 

if the pattern of travel is the same as the day you got caught

 

 

then they are thinking it is you using it.

 

 

so, its no good hiding the facts from anyone, let alone us.

 

 

we can help you

but we NEED to exactly know the cards we are playing with.

 

 

you've already stated you had an oyster card with credit and it was available for you to use

but you chose to fraudulently use a freedom pass.

 

 

this is not good....

 

 

so stop faffin around and tell us the info we need to try mitigate the damage for you...

 

 

how many weeks did you use the freedom pass for....

 

 

dx


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and yes, they will use cctv images of every time the pass was used, it is all stored.

 

 

They know what you look like and where and when you have used it at least once so it wont take them long to trawl through it all.

 

 

Contactless bank card?

they will have something to say if you have one of those and didnt use it where possible.

 

 

However, the penalty for the multiple uses wont be much more than using it just the once when it goes to court.

 

 

It unfortunately makes the liklihood of offering restitution by way of a surcharge much less likely but not impossible.

The chap who diddled them out of thousands and was a city high flyer only had to repay the money they lost.

(he got the sack after his name was made public as his company didnt like the adverse publicity).

 

try telling them that you have been very foolish and have learnt a lesson the hard way

and would prefer to try and offer a settlement if that could be considered.

 

 

Tell them about being unemployed and that a criminal record will severely hinder your prospects so hope they will consider etc etc

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Thank you so much for your reply ericsbrother.

 

I don't have Contacless bank card at all, just PAY AS YOU GO.

 

What do you mean by this please:

" the penalty for the multiple uses wont be much more than using it just the once when it goes to court."

does it mean at court, the multiple uses is considered one "big" fraud and that it is, I don't know if my understanding is correct.

 

 

When you said: "try telling them that you have been very foolish and have learnt a lesson the hard way

and would prefer to try and offer a settlement if that could be considered. "

 

I already sent them a first letter explaining approximately that, but now shall I send them another letter ? and shall I confess my multiple uses?

 

Their first reply was like this:

" .............

...............

In relation to your actions you state

"I have not done so before".

I have analysed the recent travel usage on the Freedom Pass withdrawn from you.

The pattern of usage would appear to indicate that the incident was not a one-off.

This is of concern to TFL.

 

As it currently stands TFL do not wish to accept your offer of a payment as a closure to the matter.

I must point out that legal proceedings may still be taken against you. "

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Thank you so much for your reply ericsbrother.

 

I don't have Contacless bank card at all, just PAY AS YOU GO.

 

What do you mean by this please:

" the penalty for the multiple uses wont be much more than using it just the once when it goes to court."

does it mean at court, the multiple uses is considered one "big" fraud and that it is, I don't know if my understanding is correct.

 

 

When you said: "try telling them that you have been very foolish and have learnt a lesson the hard way

and would prefer to try and offer a settlement if that could be considered. "

 

I already sent them a first letter explaining approximately that, but now shall I send them another letter ? and shall I confess my multiple uses?

 

Their first reply was like this:

" .............

...............

In relation to your actions you state

"I have not done so before".

I have analysed the recent travel usage on the Freedom Pass withdrawn from you.

The pattern of usage would appear to indicate that the incident was not a one-off.

This is of concern to TFL.

 

As it currently stands TFL do not wish to accept your offer of a payment as a closure to the matter.

I must point out that legal proceedings may still be taken against you. "

 

I'm not sure it matters a great deal what you say now.

TfL usually prosecute Freedom Pass abuse.

 

I don't know if they check CCTV or not, but they already have reason to believe that you lied about the usage being a one off.

If you now confirm you lied : likely they'll prosecute.

If you stick to your story that you only used it the once, they'll likely suspect you are lying : and if they check the CCTV they'll definitely know.

Bear in mind they don't have to know / prove you are lying : they can prosecute you for the confirmed (single) offence regardless, and their suspicion that you have used the card more than once and lied about it is enough to make that likely.

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I'm not sure it matters a great deal what you say now.

TfL usually prosecute Freedom Pass abuse.

 

I don't know if they check CCTV or not, but they already have reason to believe that you lied about the usage being a one off.

If you now confirm you lied : likely they'll prosecute.

If you stick to your story that you only used it the once, they'll likely suspect you are lying : and if they check the CCTV they'll definitely know.

Bear in mind they don't have to know / prove you are lying : they can prosecute you for the confirmed (single) offence regardless, and their suspicion that you have used the card more than once and lied about it is enough to make that likely.

 

Thank you BazzaS.

 

Very reasonable.

OK say I am going to be prosecuted, then I am going to receive a summons explained the alleged offence asking me to appear in a Magistrate court.

 

Here the alleged offence in the summons, it will be the (single) offence or my (multiple use) offence?

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Thank you BazzaS.

 

Very reasonable.

OK say I am going to be prosecuted, then I am going to receive a summons explained the alleged offence asking me to appear in a Magistrate court.

 

Here the alleged offence in the summons, it will be the (single) offence or my (multiple use) offence?

 

Who knows?

 

If they have (available, and can be bothered to go back to) the CCTV : they might prosecute you for multiple episodes.

However, they might think "why bother", and prosecute you only for the one episode they'll find it easier to prove beyond all reasonable doubt.

 

I can't see why it makes much difference to you. A prosecution for one or more evasions of fare seems likely. The only real difference likely from "one episode" vs. "more than one episode" is in terms of having to pay the fare(s) evaded, and I'm not sure this will make a massive difference in terms of the total bill you are facing, nor the likely criminal record that would come with a conviction.

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Who knows?

 

I can't see why it makes much difference to you. A prosecution for one or more evasions of fare seems likely. The only real difference likely from "one episode" vs. "more than one episode" is in terms of having to pay the fare(s) evaded, and I'm not sure this will make a massive difference in terms of the total bill you are facing, nor the likely criminal record that would come with a conviction.

 

Thank you so much for your response BazzaS

 

Yes it is true, I know this.

 

But for me, at this stage:

==> if I know that they will 80% gave me the offence (multiple use), I will try to approach TFL now...said that I lied, ask for forgiveness not to go to court.

If I will wait to ask to settle out of court once I got their response...They might ask me why I did not cooperate before...because to get a summons I think I should wait up to 6 months. I am not sure.

Because my main focus is criminal record...I want to avoid it if possible.

 

==> On the other hand, if I know that they will 80% gave me the offence (single), I will wait for their response. Not because of the costs, but because it is easy and more comfortable to apology and ask forgiveness if it is just once.

Anyway, it is up to them to not settle out of court. They are right under the law, and of course I will plead guilty.

 

 

But I am not sure...I don't know shall I get a solicitor and act from now...Shall I call them and confess...do you it via post??

Because I have a friend who is a solicitor (not criminal..immigration) and he asked a senior barrister about my case, however he said me

"You have to wait for their response, nothing can be done, need to wait and see"

As I am worried about the matter, I tried to get other people opinions including other solicitors...or any case similar to me.

 

It is bad, I don't like cheating and regret it but I really did not know the bad consequences of my actions.

Well it is done now

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Thank you so much for your response BazzaS

 

Yes it is true, I know this.

 

But for me, at this stage:

==> if I know that they will 80% gave me the offence (multiple use), I will try to approach TFL now...said that I lied, ask for forgiveness not to go to court.

If I will wait to ask to settle out of court once I got their response...They might ask me why I did not cooperate before...because to get a summons I think I should wait up to 6 months. I am not sure.

Because my main focus is criminal record...I want to avoid it if possible.

 

==> On the other hand, if I know that they will 80% gave me the offence (single), I will wait for their response. Not because of the costs, but because it is easy and more comfortable to apology and ask forgiveness if it is just once.

Anyway, it is up to them to not settle out of court. They are right under the law, and of course I will plead guilty.

 

 

But I am not sure...I don't know shall I get a solicitor and act from now...Shall I call them and confess...do you it via post??

Because I have a friend who is a solicitor (not criminal..immigration) and he asked a senior barrister about my case, however he said me

"You have to wait for their response, nothing can be done, need to wait and see"

As I am worried about the matter, I tried to get other people opinions including other solicitors...or any case similar to me.

 

It is bad, I don't like cheating and regret it but I really did not know the bad consequences of my actions.

Well it is done now

 

Hello again.

 

I'm not sure there will be another response from TfL. By all means wait for other responses, but I read their reply as putting the ball in your court.

 

As it currently stands TFL do not wish to accept your offer of a payment as a closure to the matter.

I must point out that legal proceedings may still be taken against you. "

 

Personally, I would be trying to negotiate on the phone with the person who signed the letter, because you could find that the next thing you get is a court summons. I think you may have misunderstood the 6 month time limit, my understanding is that TfL have up to six months to take this to court, but from other threads I've seen here, a summons can arrive quite soon after TfL receive a response from the passenger.

 

HB


Illegitimi non carborundum

 

 

 

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Hello again.

 

I'm not sure there will be another response from TfL. By all means wait for other responses, but I read their reply as putting the ball in your court.

 

As it currently stands TFL do not wish to accept your offer of a payment as a closure to the matter.

I must point out that legal proceedings may still be taken against you. "

 

Personally, I would be trying to negotiate on the phone with the person who signed the letter, because you could find that the next thing you get is a court summons. I think you may have misunderstood the 6 month time limit, my understanding is that TfL have up to six months to take this to court, but from other threads I've seen here, a summons can arrive quite soon after TfL receive a response from the passenger.

 

HB

 

Hello,

 

Thank you honeybee13 for the reply.

My mum said the same I should phone the person who signed the letter and not wait for the summons.

 

For me I am still not convinced, I don't know.

because via phone the prosecutor needs some clarification for the total offence (as it is the TFL person duty, which is right)...that means I have to admit the multiple uses.

And it is not in my favour to contact a person (who I might be face to face with at court) and keep lying...and I can't do it.

 

And if I will admit via phone the multiple use, it is easy for them to prove against me and likely to bring the case to court as it is not ONE MISTAKE, it is intended to cheat few times...it is like a big fraud.

And I might not be able to defend myself to reason with the person (with mitigation circumstances)...as I will be very very anxious.

 

Also, when calling via phone I don't have prove that I cooperated with TFL to show it to court later (if needed and my case goes further).

 

I don't know if I should send a letter via post and confirm I lied.

 

I am still worried and confused.

 

Well, normally someone needs to admit his fault and then ask forgiveness. Not lie and ask forgiveness.

However, these legal things is quiet risky.

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Well, normally someone needs to admit his fault and then ask forgiveness. Not lie and ask forgiveness.

However, these legal things is quiet risky.

 

 

the only risky thing here is you lied, twice.

 

 

confess all in a letter..completely, don't try and pull the wool..they know

that's why they wrote that letter using the wording they did..


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I'm afraid I agree with your mother.

 

It reads to me that TfL's reluctance to look at an out of court settlement is partly to do with your claiming you only used the ticket once. Whether you're charged with one or more occasions of using the pass, TfL will still know about the multiple use, won't they?

 

You may not be dealing with a prosecutor, I believe there are admin staff in offices as well, dealing with the paperwork. Maybe someone will confirm this.

 

Old-CodJA, one of the forum regulars, always says that part of prosecuting fare evaders is to change their behaviour. I think TfL are looking for you to acknowledge what you've done and show sincere remorse, so they can feel that you won't repeat this. By avoiding telling them everything, I don't think you're giving the impression of remorse. If you're asked how many times you used the pass, you could say you don't remember, I guess, but if you stick to trying to avoid the question, I don't think it will help.

 

HB


Illegitimi non carborundum

 

 

 

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Crossed posts, dx, sorry. I don't think we're disgreeing though, except over whether to ring or write. :) I've read plenty of threads where people negotiated over the phone and this could be confirmed by emailing the TfL person.

 

HB


Illegitimi non carborundum

 

 

 

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In relation to your actions you state

"I have not done so before".

 

I have analysed the recent travel usage on the Freedom Pass withdrawn from you.

The pattern of usage would appear to indicate that the incident was not a one-off.

This is of concern to TFL.

As it currently stands TFL do not wish to accept your offer of a payment as a closure to the matter.

 

are the two important bits

 

speaking directly, which ofcourse conveys your tone offvoice and attitude

might well work.

 

 

however you need to make notes so you state the important things in mitigation

 

 

equally a letter does the same...


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Hello again,

 

Thank you very much dx100uk and honeybee13. Really appreciate it.

OK, I am convinced now. I have to call them I think.

 

Thank you again dx100uk.

I didn't understand well the phrase "As it currently stands"

 

I thought that now TFL don't like to accept an offer but they might accept it in the future after reviewing my case.

 

However, I find these meaning when googling it:

 

"as it stands" encompasses a physical/cultural/business state which is typically expected to require proactive input

to change.

 

"As it stands" means "if things continue the way they are now", or "if things don't change from the way they are now".

 

So the meaning of TFL is:

" If you keep your first version that you used the Pass just once, TFL do not wish to accept your offer of a payment as a closure to the matter."

 

I am sorry for wasting your time, I am not very fluent in English.

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Crossed posts, dx, sorry. I don't think we're disgreeing though, except over whether to ring or write. :) I've read plenty of threads where people negotiated over the phone and this could be confirmed by emailing the TfL person.

 

HB

 

When negotiating via phone, how to confirm that via email please.

I just have a generic email from TFL on the letter and not the person who deals with my case?

Thank you

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