Merton and Lambeth joint approach bangs blue badge fraudster to rights

Lambeth Council prosecuted Lambeth resident 51-year-old Michael Anthony O’Driscoll for fraudulently using an altered Lambeth blue badge while in Merton and making false representations in order to have three Penalty Charge Notices cancelled.

O’Driscoll pleaded not guilty last month (26/05/2010) at Tower Bridge Magistrates Court to three offences under the Fraud Act 2006. He was sentenced to 200 hours community service to be completed within 18 months and ordered to contribute towards prosecution costs of £700 to be paid within seven days.

Merton parking officers caught the defendant in possession of an expired badge which had been altered to show the date of 26 February 2010. The serial number on the badge had also been changed. Merton Council then checked the validity of the badge with the issuing borough, Lambeth.

Merton Council deputy leader and cabinet member for performance and implementation Councillor Mark Betteridge said: ‘This is a great example of two boroughs working together to bring an offender to justice. We will not stand for people fraudulently taking advantage of the services and provisions we make for the more vulnerable in our community. Blue badges are there to help our residents with mobility difficulties and they are not to be abused.’

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