Driver had to spend Â£600 appealing parking fines with Northampton firm... even though he had SOLD the offending car
A driver has won an 18-month battle with a Northampton company, a council and bailiffs over Â£1,000 in unpaid parking fines on a car he had sold.
Andy Horrobin, 50, sold the Renault in October 2014 but started receiving tickets in the post just three months later.
Two parking fines were slapped on the car within an hour of each other by a Sheffield City Council enforcement officer in February 2015.
Mr Horrobin was stunned when the £60 tickets arrived at his flat 65 miles away in Coalville, Leics, a month later.
Sheffield City Council then sent bailiffs to his home twice after claiming he failed to make contact.
But Mr Horrobin insisted he did contact the authority but no-one listened to his explanation once he missed one deadline.
The unemployed divorcee was forced to lodge appeals with the Northampton-based Traffic Enforcement Appeals which costs £99 each time.
They were initially rejected but, after he re-submitted the appeals for a second time, he has finally had the parking tickets cancelled.
Yesterday, Mr Horribin, who receives Employment Support Allowance for disabling nerve and muscle problems, said he has spent £600 fighting the case of mistaken identity.
He added: “I sent them back the form showing proof of sale and everything else they wanted to know.
“The second fine followed three months later when I went through the same procedure again.
“I rang the council, but they said they didn’t believe me.
“They sent bailiffs round to collect the money. I wouldn’t let them in. I was forced to move stuff like my bass guitar and other musical equipment out so they couldn’t take it.
“I wrote to the DVLA and got a letter back, which I forwarded to the council proving I was no longer the owner of the car.
“I finally got an email from the council last week saying they were transferring liability.
“While I was happy to get it, I’m now down more than £600, which I had to borrow. I’m as sick as a parrot.”
Sheffield City Council said at the time of the offence it was told by the DVLA Mr Horrobin was the registered keeper of the Renault.
Councillor Mazher Iqbal, cabinet member for infrastructure and transport, added: “We rely on the information about registered keepers supplied by the DVLA and this showed that Mr Horrobin was still the registered keeper of this vehicle when the offences took place.
“We wrote to him on several occasions but those letters weren’t responded to, leading us towards enforcement action.
“We always take this step as an absolute last resort and would urge people who receive these letters, even if they believe a mistake has been made, to not ignore them. If a notice is ignored repeatedly we will take action through the courts.
“After being notified of impending enforcement, Mr Horrobin made us aware of the error, we investigated and have cancelled the penalty charges.
“New notices have now been issued to the correct driver.”
A DVLA spokesman added: “I can confirm that we were not notified by Mr Horrobin when he sold his vehicle.
“We updated our records as soon as the new keeper notified us that they had the vehicle.”