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Jo C.
Jo C., Barrister
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 71153
Experience:  Over 5 years in practice
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I've received in the post an S9 Court Summons speeding

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I've received in the post an S9 Court Summons for a speeding offence and a subsequent failure to identify a driver. The alleged speeding offence was in September 2014 (having looked into this it's perfectly possible it was me.) But, this is the ONLY communication I have received on the matter.
What would be my best plan of action??
Thank you for your question. My name is ***** ***** I will try to help with this.
Do the DVLA have the correct address for you and your vehicle?
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

Yes they do. It is consistent to my V5.

In the witness statements is a copy of the Intention to Prosecute and albeit Ashfield is spelt ASHFLD the information is correct

Is there any reason you wouldn't have received the earlier correspondence?
Are there issues with your post?
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

I'm not aware of any issues. However, I was away (business & holiday)during the first 3 weeks of October when the notice would have potentially arrived. So you can imagine that we had quite a lot of post on our return on the 25th. It "could" have fell inside one of the many flyers (which I recycle straight away.) but I'm confident it wasn't. There was also no reminder at any point, is that standard????

No, normally there would be a first NIP and a reminder.
Is it likely that both would have gone missing? Have you recently moved or something of that kind?
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

Same property for 22 years.

There is no mention (or copy) of any reminder in the "pack" I have just received. There are two ambiguous statements about the equipment working properly at the time.

What was the date of the speeding offence?
Do you know who was driving?
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

29/09/2014. 11:23am

I was travelling to the airport from work and it would have been myself driving. I was picking up a colleague and the flight was early evening so I was by no means in a rush. The alleged offence is on a dual carriageway with a central reservation but a low limit. I wouldn't be contesting it was me and my fault had I received any notice.

What was the speed alleged please?
I suppose the limit was 70 mph unless it was a reduced section?
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

No at that point, it's a 40mph limit, I was recorded at 56mph. It changes to 50 just a little further on and 70 about half a mile after that. I'm not trying to justify the speed but it's a down hill section and just after a roundabout. Having considered the information and revisited the site (and not wanting to appear at all cynical) it's easy to see why a mobile camera might be positioned there. As I've said, I wouldn't have contested that I was speeding had I received ANY notification.

There are various options.
You can always attend court and ask them to prove that a NIP was sent out in good time. The practical reality though is that they probably did and the point would fall away.
You can offer a plea to speeding if you know that you were the driver in exchange for dropping the failing to identify. They will probably accept that. I used to prosecute road traffic courts all the time and it is rare that CPS pursue a failing to identify if a speeding is available.
Failing that, you could defend the matter. You do have a defence to failing to identify if you didn't get the S172 request. The burden of proof does pass to you though and you have to be realistic about your position. They will almost certainly be saying they sent out two S172 requests and both went missing. If you are saying you may have received it and thrown it away as junk mail that is not a defence.
Can I clarify anythinng for you?
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

Hi Jo,

I have a "form" to fill in which asks for my plea on both counts.

I am quite prepared to plead guilty on the speeding offence (I know it was me and accept I must have been speeding.) But do I plead guilty to the second offence and write this in the mitigating circumstances? Or do I plead not guilty and await a court appearance??

You really need to attend court.
I know that the forms do read as though you have to plead but you are perfectly entitled to enter a plea at court and ignore them.
If that concerns you then just plead not guilty to both and attend court to negotiate.
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