Cautionary tale about having someone else take your penalty points
Taking penalty points is a serious criminal offence and perverting the course of justice. It was all over the news a short while ago. But now the convictions of Chris Huhne and Vicky Price for perverting the course of justice have faded in time and are no longer in the public consciousness the courts are once again seeing the return of people accused of perverting the course of justice due to others ‘taking their points’. It may therefore be worth re-examining the dangers of doing this.
A bit of background on the Hunhe case- Chris Huhne received a penalty notice for speeding in May 2003; he was on 9 penalty points already so faced losing his licence if convicted. His wife Vicky Huhne proceeded to ‘take the points’ for him- meaning that the endorsement for the offence did not appear on his licence but did on hers as she misled the authorities by claiming that she was driving at the time of the offence.
This is of course against the law- it is perverting the course of justice. Huhne himself pleaded guilty to this offence, his then ex-wife fought the case with a relatively spurious defence and was convicted by a jury. Both received 8 month prison sentences.
It is a well-known tale and should be a lesson to all. So why do people choose to copy them?
It is of course unrealistic to suggest that giving someone else your points isn’t a temptation. Imagine- you have 9 penalty points on your licence and receive a Notice of Intended Prosecution through the post. The upshot will be, if you accept liability, that you have 12 points on your licence, be ‘totted’ and lose your driving licence for a minimum of 6 months. For many their licence is their livelihood and without a driving licence they would lose their job. Getting someone else to take the points is attractive, right?
Wrong. People sometimes think that ‘the police will never find out’ but the sad fact of the matter is that if the police suspect that you are not telling the truth or that there are lies involved then the likelihood is that they will find out. Through looking at the journey details, looking at your diaries and work commitments, looking at CCTV on the route or through triangulation of your position at the time of the offence through cell site analysis of your mobile telephone- there are a multitude of ways in which a person can be caught behind the wheel.
But whatever you do – don’t be tempted to get rid of your penalty points by trying to get someone else to ‘take the points’ for you, the consequences are too dire.
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POSTED: Monday, September 15, 2014