Awaiting notice - leaving the country indefinitely

Oothelp

New Member
Joined
7 Sep 2021
Messages
4
Location
London
Hi all

I was stopped at Cutty Sark DLR two days ago with my fiancée. I managed to unfortunately literally lose my credit card (pay as you go) on the DLR.

When stopped, I explained I dropped my card (I only found out when stopped - if I wanted to intentionally fare dodge I would have turned around instead of going to meet the enforcement officials). I immediately cancelled my credit card as well.

I simply informed them that I’m happy to pay the fine - and to please send it to my address or provide me with payment details (impossible for me to pay immediately given I had no credit card)! The enforcement officials didn’t seem to like my approach of simply repeating that Id like the matter resolved ASAP and would like to leave after they have my details - and inexplicably threatened to prosecute me by name dropping a law firm in the neighbourhood. I happen to be a lawyer and pointed out that’s probably not how it works which probably wasn’t the cleverest move.

I offered up my details and they seemed to make numerous errors (my DOB, name, address) and recorded my statement erroneously which I had to repeatedly correct. When that was done; I asked again if I could leave and they said if I left they would note down that I walked away. I said fine - and to please send me the documents and I’ll pay them - before leaving with my fiancée who’s pregnant and understandably stressed by the situation.

Now my concern is that I am leaving the U.K. indefinitely in several days (I am not a U.K. citizen or long term resident). I am moving out of my current address and so any notice here is likely going to be missed.

Now having done the research, I understand that in the event there’s a prosecution; I could get hit under the byelaw or under the law which requires proof of intent.

I am hoping to receive a quick penalty fare notice which I can promptly pay but I am assuming it’s at the option of the enforcement officers; who clearly wasn’t very pleased with me.

If they choose to prosecute me; it gets a bit annoying considering I simply won’t be around in the U.K. I assume there’s an option of just ignoring it since I’m leaving the country for good but I doubt that’s where I want to go with it.

Annoyingly, there isn’t an email address I can easily reach, I’ve gone and put in an inquiry at https://www.ircas.co.uk/ but I’m not sure how effective this is, especially since I don’t have a ref number.

My two main queries are:
1. Is there a way to reach the relevant persons before they issue the paperwork (or even after); and
2. Do they ever prosecute under the intention crime? Happy to take the byelaw hit (strict liability and all) but obviously wouldn’t want to be found guilty of an intention based crime while I’m not in the country or in attendance to defend myself!

Also probably a very niche point but in the event I miss everything and I get hit with a £1000 fine but never return to the U.K... what happens?

Any other advice would of course be appreciated.
 
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clagmonster

Established Member
Joined
8 Jun 2005
Messages
2,379
My first thought is that you should look into setting up the Royal Mail redirection service to your address outside the country.
Whilst pricey, this will ensure that you receive any correspondence and are able to deal with the matter.

As you failed to hand over a ticket, you are automatically guilty of a byelaw offence.

However, as for the more serious RORA offence, I would be inclined to collect the following evidence as a defence against any accusation of intent:
1) Written confirmation from the bank that your card was reported lost
2) A copy of your journey history, which should show an incomplete journey from wherever you tapped in.
3) A copy of your bank statement showing the incomplete journey charge.

I would not ignore this - if you do so, you could quite easily be found guilty in your absence then if you ever do choose to return find an arrest warrant waiting at the airport.
 

skyhigh

Established Member
Joined
14 Sep 2014
Messages
1,466
I am hoping to receive a quick penalty fare notice which I can promptly pay but I am assuming it’s at the option of the enforcement officers; who clearly wasn’t very pleased with me.
You can't be retrospectively issued a penalty fare.
 

Oothelp

New Member
Joined
7 Sep 2021
Messages
4
Location
London
Thanks for replies so far.

Anyone knows approximate timing (i.e. how efficient they are?)

My first thought is that you should look into setting up the Royal Mail redirection service to your address outside the country.
Whilst pricey, this will ensure that you receive any correspondence and are able to deal with the matter.

As you failed to hand over a ticket, you are automatically guilty of a byelaw offence.

However, as for the more serious RORA offence, I would be inclined to collect the following evidence as a defence against any accusation of intent:
1) Written confirmation from the bank that your card was reported lost
2) A copy of your journey history, which should show an incomplete journey from wherever you tapped in.
3) A copy of your bank statement showing the incomplete journey charge.

I would not ignore this - if you do so, you could quite easily be found guilty in your absence then if you ever do choose to return find an arrest warrant waiting at the airport.
Thank you.

Considering this isn’t an indictable offence; I wouldn’t think an arrest warrant is possible?

Seems frustrating that so much trouble came out of losing my credit card on a journey we don’t usually take!

I have reported the card lost on the same day and have a screenshot of bank confirmation. I’ll look into the statements but since I cancelled my card I can’t access those statements anymore on my banking app - can probably dig those out!
 

Bletchleyite

Veteran Member
Joined
20 Oct 2014
Messages
69,082
Location
"Marston Vale mafia"
Considering this isn’t an indictable offence; I wouldn’t think an arrest warrant is possible?

Arrest (and a custodial sentence) is theoretically possible for any offence in the UK if a fine is handed down by the Court and it is not paid (and can't be dealt with via bailiffs). Unlikely but possible.
 

Oothelp

New Member
Joined
7 Sep 2021
Messages
4
Location
London
Arrest (and a custodial sentence) is theoretically possible for any offence in the UK if a fine is handed down by the Court and it is not paid. Unlikely but possible.
That sounds sensible.

Looks like best course of action is to get mail redirected and hope it comes through.

I’d love to be able to email someone and just deal with it that way...
 

clagmonster

Established Member
Joined
8 Jun 2005
Messages
2,379
I’d love to be able to email someone and just deal with it that way...
It probably is worth contacting TfL, even if you can only get the number for the customer relations rather than direct to the prosecutions department to try to get your new address on record as a supplement to the redirection.
 

Oothelp

New Member
Joined
7 Sep 2021
Messages
4
Location
London
It probably is worth contacting TfL, even if you can only get the number for the customer relations rather than direct to the prosecutions department to try to get your new address on record as a supplement to the redirection.
Good call - I’ll shoot them an email so it’s on the record.
 

Parham Wood

Member
Joined
13 Jun 2011
Messages
227
I would send a signed for on delivery letter to TfL prosecutions department stating the event details, the address you gave them at the time and that you will be leaving the country and that you can be contacted at xxxxx address in future. Also that you are willing to pay a penalty fare due to the loss of your credit card which you have reported to your bank. I would also arrange for your mail to be forwarded to your new address.
 

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