Saturday, July 26, 2008

Are speed cameras legal?

This could be a blunder of bigger proportions than the parking ticket one ... again arising from the 1991 Road Traffic Act.

Robbie puts brakes on speed cameras
By Robert Wight
Sunday Post 13 July 2008

MILLIONS of motorists have been convicted of speeding on dodgy evidence from illegal cameras, claims a Scots roads campaigner.
Community lawyer Robbie the Pict, who helped bring an end to tolls on the Skye Bridge, has identified a legal glitch he says makes evidence from all speed cameras — fixed and hand-held — inadmissible in court.
Known as the ‘Irn Bru Defence’ because of its Scottish roots, the argument is being used by lawyers in several test cases on both sides of the Border.
If successful, it could lead to more than 10 million motorists convicted since 1992 claiming back around £600 million in fines.
"This has been called the Irn Bru Defence because it was made in Scotland and promises to throw a girder — not just a spanner — into the legal works," said Robbie.

"Millions of drivers have had monies unlawfully extorted from them because of convictions based on images from these illegal cameras. Compensation could take the Government's potential bill to way above what it would cost just to pay back the fines."
Robbie argues that prior to 1992, radar-type speed measuring devices needed only the approval of the Home Office. But from that July, the Road Traffic Act (1991) required all
new makes and models of speed camera to be specified in a Parliamentary Order.
This is supposed to be done using a Statutory Instrument (SI) — best described as a "mini-Act of Parliament" — and a new SI must be issued for each individual type of camera.
Robbie reckons that since 1992 over 40 different devices have been approved by the Home Office and the Association of Chief Police Officers, but without the say-so of Parliament.

In June, barrister Michael Shrimpton used Robbie's argument to convince magistrates in Nuneaton to throw out a case. He is acting in around 10 upcoming cases and in Scotland the defence is currently being used in five more cases.
"Any driver who receives a letter notifying them of a £60 penalty and three points on their licence on the basis of video-graphic evidence should write to the relevant Chief Constable to ask which Parliamentary Order covers the device," explained Robbie.
"Or write a caveat on the back of your cheque stating it's only payable subject to the existence of the Order for the device."
A Home Office spokeswoman said, "All generic descriptions of speed measuring device producing records acceptable to the courts have been prescribed in the proper manner."


Anonymous said...

Robbie has never been successful in any of his hair brained schemes to prove things illegal. He fell out with the campaigners to remove the tolls on the Skye Bridge because he was determined to prove it illegal. The campaigners continued without him and were successful in persuading the Scottish Government to pay off the Bridge Company.

Jonno said...

I would not only ask if the cameras are legal but ask what relevant tests are done to prove their accuracy. As these types of tests refer to electronic laboratory testing, I would make sure that the laboratories are accredited to do these types of tests. Also their staff needs to be accredited to make sure all proper testing is done. In Australia they do proper testing, but there are no laboratories to do so. Explain this! Also we recently had a 29 Million au dollar refunds because of this slight problem. Dick Turpin was a gentleman compared to these thieves.

Anonymous said...

"All generic descriptions of speed measuring device producing records acceptable to the courts have been prescribed in the proper manner."
Isn't that what the councils said about their PCNs, road rigns and markings and their paperwork

jed said...

lol this guy is a hero speed cameras are ca*p sppeding is good and safe

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