A Watford shopper has been ordered to pay £310 for using a Blue Badge that wasn’t his to park illegally following a successful prosecution by Watford Borough Council.
Hadleigh Aybes, from Golders Green, London, was fined £130 and ordered to pay £150 in prosecution costs and a £30 victim surcharge at St Albans Magistrates’ Court last month.
Watford Borough Council fraud investigators joined Herts Police officers on patrol. They noticed a black Audi A4 convertible parked on a single yellow line on Church Street, Watford. The vehicle had displayed a Blue Badge on the dashboard.
The Blue Badge scheme allows disabled people to park closer to their destination and permits them to park on single and double yellow lines, in designated disabled bays and also in certain pay and display bays without charge.
The driver of the Audi had been shopping in Watford with his mother. The Blue Badge was examined and it was discovered that it did not belong to him or his passengers – it belonged to his father. He was questioned about where his father was and initially Mr Aybes said he was in town but after further questioning he admitted that the Blue Badge holder was at home.
The Blue Badge was seized by a police officer and returned to the London Borough of Barnet. Watford Borough Council later wrote to Mr Aybes, inviting him to an interview under caution.
Elected Mayor of Watford Peter Taylor said: “We will not tolerate the abuse of the Blue Badge scheme in Watford, which is in place to help people who need it. We will continue to work tirelessly with our partners to bring people who misuse the scheme to justice.”
Mr Aybes was interviewed under caution. He admitted to using the Blue Badge without the Blue Badge holder being present. He was summoned to St Albans Magistrates’ Court for an offence under the Road Traffic Act, where he pleaded guilty.