Victims wrongly issued fines

SAME NUMBER PLATES: One of the victims' cars (BMW), who she says has been stationary for several months due to being unable to make repairs, while the car in the photo is a Mercedes Benz.

SEVERAL Ekurhuleni residents have received various fines, but upon closer inspection discovered it was not their vehicles in question.

The fines are issued to the persons in question, but the cars in the photographs do not belong to them and it shows the cars have been driving around in areas where they’ve never been, namely Tembisa.

But fines is not where it stops. One resident has recently received a notice, without the option of a fine, stating that a summons to appear in court will arrive soon.

The culprit, using the same number plate as that of the resident, clocked 170km/h in a 120km/h zone.

“At first I laughed and then I got extremely angry. Does EMPD not have a system in place where all legally registered vehicles are listed? Surely if a number plate comes up and it shows a different vehicle than the legally registered vehicle to that registration number, those issuing the fines should be able to put two and two together? This is beyond ridiculous.

“Again, the innocent must take time off, wait in a queue to get a police statement, then take the statement to EMPD. And what if that does not satisfy the authorities? Do they honestly expect of me to take another day or two off from work to appear in court to prove my innocence?” the resident asked.

Another unhappy road user said: “Aside from the financial drama of having to pay a fine that we should not have to pay because we are innocent, what happens if a serious crime is committed with that car with the cloned number plate? They will arrest us!”

The numbers for enquiries on one of the fines (011 999 7557 and 011 999 7554) do not exist. Anyone who would like to find out more or complain about these issues would have to pay the EMPD a visit.

Another complainant shared a very similar experience after receiving a fine, again for a completely different car than her own.

“I am expected to pay this fine or legal action will be taken against me, while these criminals run around free and the law is seemingly oblivious or just don’t care, but we all know that in South Africa, crime does pay,” said another victim.

RECORD has contacted the EMPD for comment. Spokesperson Wilfred Kgasago said the following:

“Inform the concerned motorists that the first port of call for complaints of this nature should be the authorities, not the media!

“Motorists receiving fines and suspecting that their vehicles’ number plates are cloned should do as follows: Request a photo at the metro police offices to view so as to ascertain the time, location and whether the vehicle on the photo is his/hers.

“Get an affidavit at the police station that the vehicle on the photo is not his/hers and once satisfied that the information is valid, the metro police fine administration department would annul the fine.

“Are you not aware that criminals clone vehicles’ number plates for their own nefarious deeds? Evidently, if the police is not aware that the vehicle’s number plate was cloned they would make an arrest. Proof and other evidence which the ‘wrongly arrested’ person would provide would resolve the issue of the ‘wrongful arrest'”.

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  AUTHOR
David Pienaar
Reporter

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