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Ash
Ash, Solicitor
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 10915
Experience:  Solicitor with 5+ years experience
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I boarded a train without a ticket, on route to London, i had

Customer Question

I boarded a train without a ticket, on route to London, i had the ticket from Birmingham to London, but there was large party of children and there teachers/ carers obtaining tickets, if i had waited i would have missed the train and onward connection to London, a ticket inspector was on the service, and issued a penalty ticket i aced could i purchase one from the guard, ticket checking and issue person who was further along on the same carriage, the inspector said she would not do allow this and accused me of trying to cheat, i had the ticket to show i had purchased online fort eh Birmingham to London Journey, she was not interested and started raising her voice over the issue, and abused my rights by way of her loud voice everyone on the train heard the conversation, i was actually a little frightened because her attitude was that i board the train with then intention of not paying, she would not let me pay the guard / ticket checker and issuer of tickets on the train, when i got of at Moor street station, i went to the ticket office to tell the administrator about the situation, she said the inspector is know for her " bolshi ' way, and said she should have allowed you
to purchase a ticket on the train or at the ticket office at Moor St, especially as i had tickets to London, had there not been a large crowd of children in excess of 30, i would have purchased a ticket at Stourbridge Junction, cost about £4.50, had i have waited i would have missed my connection to London, for a appointment, i was shaken and upset at this inspectors attitude and way of dealing with me her voice was powerful and abusive in nature, has she have spoken quiet and normal and not accused me of trying to cheat, the situation would I'm sure have been resolved, she was of Asian colour and i feel she abused my rights as a human being, this was in Nov 2013, i have been informed today that a court case is set for early July at Birmingham magistrates court, what are my options
Submitted: 2 years ago.
Category: Law
Expert:  Ash replied 2 years ago.

Alex Watts :

Hello my name is Alex and I will help you with this. Please note that I am a working Solicitor and may be on and offline as I have to attend Court and meet with clients, even at weekends. As such you may not get an instant response when you reply as this is not an ‘on demand’ live service, but rest assured I will be giving your question my immediate attention upon return. There is no need to wait here, you will get an email when I reply.

Alex Watts :

Did you not pay the penalty charge please?

Alex Watts :

Why did not use the ticket machine or book online?

JACUSTOMER-m34mdxjj- :

Hi Alex i did not play the penalty charge due the way the inspector abused my rights

Alex Watts :

Then that is why it is going to Court.

Alex Watts :

Did you complain to the train operating company?

JACUSTOMER-m34mdxjj- :

Yes they use a handling process company, but would not repeal the penalty charge

Alex Watts :

Sadly that is a problem for you.

Alex Watts :

You would have avoided Court if you had paid and then contested it

Alex Watts :

But now you face Court.

Alex Watts :

What is the exact wording of the allegation?

JACUSTOMER-m34mdxjj- :

That on 11th Nov 2013 between Stourbrige and Birmingham Moor St, entered strain in a non-compulsory ticket area for the purpose of travelling on the railway without having a valid ticket entitling travel

Alex Watts :

Contrary to........?

JACUSTOMER-m34mdxjj- :

( Byelaw 18(1). )

Alex Watts :

Its bad news I am afraid:

Alex Watts :

If any person—

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

(b)Having paid his fare for a certain distance, knowingly and wilfully proceeds by train beyond that distance without previously paying the additional fare for the additional distance, and with intent to avoid payment thereof; or

(c)Having failed to pay his fare, gives in reply to a request by an officer of a railway company a false name or address,

Alex Watts :

If you did not INTEND to avoid payment then you are not guilty.

Alex Watts :

This means you can enter a not guilty plea and the matter will proceed to trial

Alex Watts :

The rail company will have to show that you intended to travel with the purpose of avoiding payment

Alex Watts :

Therefore if you enter a not guilty plea, it will be set down for trial

Alex Watts :

You can't avoid that at this stage

Alex Watts :

Its being taken to Court.

Alex Watts :

You should have paid the penalty fare.

Alex Watts :

But enter a plea and there will be a trial

Alex Watts :

Can I clarify anything for you about this today please?

JACUSTOMER-m34mdxjj- :

Yes the court papers say that if i pay the fare £4.80 plus £125 as a contribution towards prosecution costs in the statement of facts if i agree in writing and pay the costs, although i still feel that inspector abused my rights, and i did not reduce to pay the guard who was on train , she reduced this saying i got on the train with the intent of not paying, thats not true.

JACUSTOMER-m34mdxjj- :

i think it may best to pay the costs, as i am worried about court over a trivial matter

Alex Watts : I would agree.
Alex Watts : If you did happen to lose costs alone would be about £500
Alex Watts : Can I clarify anything else?
JACUSTOMER-m34mdxjj- :

Thanks i think i might consider taking the inspector to court separately for abusing my rights, and write to the court incl paying the fees apologising saying that i am worried about court and further hearings which could escalate into costs i am in no position to afford.

Alex Watts : Yes indeed,
Alex Watts : If this answers your question could I invite you leave feedback on my service which I hope has been excellent today, if you need more information or help then please click reply.Please remember that I am always happy to help if you have future questions, even if I am in Court I can normally respond within a few hours. For future information, please start them with ‘For Alex W’.Please bookmark my profile if you wish for future help: http://www.justanswer.co.uk/law/expert-alexwatts/
Alex Watts :

Please remember to leave feedback before you go today

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