A bus driver was among four motorists taken to court this week as part of an ongoing Wandsworth operation to prevent the fraudulent use of disabled parking permits.
Khublall Lochan, of Aslett Street, was caught using a relative’s badge to park in Burstock Road in Putney, just a short walk from his workplace at Putney bus garage.
He was ordered to pay a fine of £495, court costs of £542 and a £20 victim surcharge.
Since the council’s permit fraud team began to investigate misuse of the blue badge parking scheme, nearly 500 dishonest drivers have been prosecuted and brought before the courts.
As a result, more than £600,000 has been returned to the public purse in fines and court costs.
Abuse of the blue badge system is rife across London as it allows holders to park virtually anywhere they like, but they can only be used when the disabled person is either driving or a passenger in the car.
None of the four people prosecuted this week were ever accompanied by a disabled person, even though they were all spotted using badges on repeated occasions.
The council’s transport spokesman Councillor Russell King said that these drivers seem to have no qualms about leaving a disabled relative cooped up indoors all day just so that they can bag a free parking space.
“There is growing evidence that many disabled people feel bullied and pressured by their relatives into handing over their blue badges,” he said.
“This callous attitude to disability demonstrates just how vital it is for all local authorities across the country to tackle this problem.”
Picture courtesy of Ray Forster, with thanks