Motorists fined for misusing blue badges

Seven motorists have been fined after being caught fraudulently using disabled blue badges.

The cases were brought before Eastbourne Magistrates last Friday by Brighton & Hove City Council prosecutor Len Batten. All defendants pleaded guilty either by letter on by attending the hearing.

The drivers were all convicted of using a Blue Badge when the holder of the Badge was not present, or of displaying a photocopied badge. All defendants pleaded guilty either by letter on by attending the hearing.

Owen Richards of Lansdowne Place, Hove; Vimbai Shoko  of Montpelier Mansions, Hove; Russell Screen of Knoll Close, Hove; Deborah Laverack of Knolton Way, Slough; William Morrison of Ditchling Road, Brighton; Carolyn Gillam of Elizabeth Avenue, Hove;  and Beatrix Szabo of Foxhill, Peacehaven, received fines and costs ranging from £310.00 to £767.00.

Several of the drivers had been caught using badges that had been cancelled, after being reported as being missing or stolen. When a badge is reported as missing and cancelled and a new badge is issued, the original badge cannot be reused.

Other drivers were caught displaying photocopies of Blue Badges. The maximum penalty for this offence is £1,000.

Cllr Gill Mitchell, chair of Brighton & Hove City Council’s Environment, Transport and Sustainability Committee said: “These prosecutions send out a clear message that blue badge misuse is being addressed in the city.

“The blue badge scheme is intended to make sure parking spaces are available for people who genuinely need them.

"We will continue to work with Sussex Police and East Sussex County Council to crackdown on misuse of blue badges and ensure that people with disabilities can get to and enjoy everything Brighton & Hove has to offer.”