Following a successful prosecution by Watford Borough Council, a town centre shopper has been ordered to pay £300 for using a Blue Badge that wasn’t hers to park illegally...
Liliana Leitao of Colnhurst Road, Watford, was fined £120 and prosecution costs of £150 were awarded along with £30 victim surcharge. Known as 'Operation Clamp', our Fraud team and Herts Police were carrying out on-street checks to prosecute motorists found to be misusing Blue Badges.
When Watford Borough Council fraud investigators joined police officers on patrol in June 2019, they noticed a car parked on a single yellow line on George Street with a Blue Badge displayed on the dashboard. The Blue Badge was examined and it was discovered that it did not belong to her, but to somebody who had passed away.
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.
Garry Turner, Fraud Manager 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.”
Mrs Leitao was interviewed under caution in July 2019 and admitted to misusing the Blue Badge. She was summoned to St Albans Magistrates Court for an offence under the Road Traffic Act, where she pleaded guilty.
If you suspect that a motorist is regularly misusing a Blue Badge, please report this to the Fraud Team via the online form at www.watford.gov.uk/reportfraud or call the dedicated fraud hotline on 0800 458 9200. The easiest way for Hertfordshire residents to find out if they qualify and apply for a Blue Badge is online at: hertfordshire.gov.uk/bluebadge.