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Jo C.
Jo C., Barrister
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 71031
Experience:  Over 5 years in practice
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A relative of mine stupidly used his girlfriends travel card.

Customer Question

A relative of mine stupidly used his girlfriend's travel card. He was caught by the ticket collector. The card was taken but his travel id card was not taken, though she said it did not match the travel card. The ticket collector issued him with a ticket. A caution was not given or paperwork issued and she did not appear to take his details. (Unless she tapped them into her machine) Should he be successfully prosecuted he would lose he job. He is normally very honest and of good character. It was a First Western Train. As yet his girlfriend has not received any notification from the company.
Submitted: 5 years ago.
Category: Law
Expert:  Ben Jones replied 5 years ago.
Hello, my name is Ben and it is my pleasure to be able to assist with your question today. Please let me know what is your query about this?
Customer: replied 5 years ago.

What is the likely- hood of prosecution given the circumstances I have already related. Without his travel id card how will the company proceed?

Will the company contact my relative's girlfriend?

If so should they put any enquiry from the train company it in the hands of a solicitor as soon as it arrives.?

Do companies settle out of court? There is no excuse and I know that prosecutions do happen. but I have read that a good lawyer can argue that the consequences of a prosecution are disproportionate to the crime. My relative is of good character and has no previous convictions of any sort.


Expert:  Jo C. replied 5 years ago.

I have been asked to look at this.

When you say a ticket, I presume you mean a fixed penalty ticket? Which would have his details upon it?
Customer: replied 5 years ago.

For JOMO1872


No an ordinary ticket, she just issued him with the normal train ticket which he paid for in cash. No fixed penalty ticket was issued. Just an ordinary ticket. No caution and ticket collector did not appear to take his details or keep his travel id card. She just removed his girl friend's travel card.


Expert:  Jo C. replied 5 years ago.

The first point to make is that no good lawyer would even try to argue that a prosecution should not be brought because the consequences are disproportionate. It is nonsense logic. Sometimes you can argue that a prosecution is not in the public interest but not in a case like this were the only real reason for not prosecuting is that he will lose his job if prosecuted. Then, I'm afraid, he should not have committed the offence.

Sometimes these companies do let people pay the internal fine but the truth is here that it would not be the normal disposal. This isn't just a case of travelling just beyond the remit of his fare or some other opportunistic action. Using the railcard of another suggests premeditation which is an aggravating feature of any offence.

However, obviously to bring any prosecution they would need his details. It is surprising they did not take them but sometimes staff don't follow procedures. If they have not then there would be no way of tracing him.

I'm sorry this isn't the answer you wanted but it is the position that you face and I have a duty to inform you truthfully.

Hope this helps. Please remember to rate my service either OK SERVICE or above and then I will give you related information for free.
Customer: replied 5 years ago.

Thank you I can only pray to God that ticket collector did not tap my sons details from ID card into her machine - he is sure she did write anything down. So so stupid. What was he thinking? Thank you for your help.

Expert:  Jo C. replied 5 years ago.
She could have done that but then she should have given him some paperwork. Obviously staff dont always do that either.

But proving ID at this stage would be a struggle for them.
Customer: replied 5 years ago.

He has just told me that he paid for the ticket with a bank card. We just have to hope for the best. 32 and getting married in May! . Thanks for you advice I know my son has access to good lawyers if the worse comes to the worse. Children !! I must admit to being very anxious but we just have wait for first contact from rail company.

Expert:  Jo C. replied 5 years ago.
Its not very likely they would do a trace of card details. It is possible but not likely.

Please remember to rate my answer.
Customer: replied 5 years ago.

That's a comfort. Well now we just wait. Thanks for all your help. I know my son is so regretting his actions but he did commit a fraudulent act - And with a good career to lose. My comfort is that he is a good man, stupid but he would not set out to harm anyone. But that is not the point. So thank you for your advice. One survives

Expert:  Jo C. replied 5 years ago.
No problem.

All the best.