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Title: My mate was speeding but I am getting the blame

Date: 07 January 2016

Question

A friend of mine who lives in South West France visited me in the summer and the buffoon got caught on camera speeding on my bike. I subsequently received a Notice of Intended Prosecution after he had returned to France! I got in touch with him and he doesn’t dispute that he was likely to have been speeding.

Therefore I completed the NIP form providing his name and address in France as he was the person to blame, not me. I heard nothing more for ages until last week I received another NIP, again relating to my friend’s offence with a covering letter telling me I provided an incorrect address. I have checked the address with my friend and it is correct. Why have they sent me a second NIP and what should I do?

Morris John, by email

Answer

I assume you completed and returned the NIP within 28 days complying with you obligation under s172 of the Road Traffic Act to provide the identity of the person driving at the time of the alleged offence. If so, you are in the clear.

I suspect that they wrote to your friend but for some reason they consider it to be an incorrect address. Perhaps your friend tried to pull a fast one and returned their correspondence “no such person” or “addressee gone away” or just ignored it. I suggest that you write back, again filling in the form with your friend’s address, and reiterate you have already provided this information and have complied with your legal obligation. Perhaps provide a letter from your friend confirming it is the correct address, first having ascertained from him he is not playing games.

Then they must leave you alone and if not they are on a hiding to nothing if they seek to prosecute you as you should succeed with a defence and seek to claim your legal costs from them. It may be worth threatening them with this when you write to them.

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