Friend offered reduced train tickets -- Question

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WesternLancer

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Did this change at some point recently, then? I had always understood, since many years ago, that tickets were technically non-transferable, even if in practice that was rarely, if ever, enforced.

EDIT: To answer my own question, it seems it wasn't historically allowed. I found a copy of NRCOC 2012, which said:
Yes, I think it was also a 'common sense' change to permit scenarios like my buying a ticket on line for my elderly parent who has not got web access / my buying a ticket for my partner as I work near the station for her to use on a journey the next day requiring an early start so she can avoid risk of queue at the station type things that would technically have been 'transferring a ticket'
 
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Haywain

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Yes, I think it was also a 'common sense' change to permit scenarios like my buying a ticket on line for my elderly parent who has not got web access / my buying a ticket for my partner as I work near the station for her to use on a journey the next day requiring an early start so she can avoid risk of queue at the station type things that would technically have been 'transferring a ticket'
Such things were never regarded as transferring a ticket - note that the text quoted by @sheff1 states "A Ticket may only be used by the person who bought that Ticket or on whose behalf that Ticket was bought". The situations you set out clearly sit in the latter category.
 

WesternLancer

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Such things were never regarded as transferring a ticket - note that the text quoted by @sheff1 states "A Ticket may only be used by the person who bought that Ticket or on whose behalf that Ticket was bought". The situations you set out clearly sit in the latter category.
Yes, indeed and thanks for pointing that out - but IIRC the ticket itself just had stated on it 'not transferable' which to most people who would not seek to read the NCoC might mean they felt they could not do the sort of thing I outlined, possibly leading to needless queries to staff on the matter. I agree with your point but seem to recall an article by Barry Doe on the matter at the time.
 

Haywain

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Yes, indeed and thanks for pointing that out - but IIRC the ticket itself just had stated on it 'not transferable' which to most people who would not seek to read the NCoC might mean they felt they could not do the sort of thing I outlined, possibly leading to needless queries to staff on the matter. I agree with your point but seem to recall an article by Barry Doe on the matter at the time.
I don't think I ever had anyone query that. If anything, people took it for granted that buying a ticket for someone else to use was entirely normal. The fact that Barry Doe might have written about something is no more evidence of it being a significant problem than it getting mentioned on this forum!
 

6Gman

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A lot of these tickets are fakes being manufactured in a fraudulent way. I won't go into details but I've come across several of them - ticket inspectors are under instruction to refer suspected fake e-tickets for police attention immediately rather than just taking details etc - there has always been an immediate and substantial police response to the train as they're often linked to organised crime amongst other things.

The good news is that the police generally treat the persons in question, provided they cooperate with disclosing details of the purchase and vendor, as victims of crime rather than prosecuting them for fare evasion.
This is the point I tried to make upthread. This could be a very sticky area to dabble in.
 

djw

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As a criminal matter I'd imagine it would be dealt with under s.1 of the Theft Act, obtaining services by deception.
Section 1 of the Theft Act 1978 was repealed by schedule 1 paragraph 1 of the Fraud Act 2006. The replacement offence is obtaining services dishonestly, contrary to s. 11 Fraud Act 2006. Another possible charge is fraud by false representation, contrary to s. 2 Fraud Act 2006 - this is often an alternative charge to the s.11 offence, as recognised in the CPS charging guidance on the Fraud Act 2006.

If you mention the Theft Act, it helps to state which one! I was thinking 1968, which is the Act more commonly mentioned - but s. 1 of that Act is the definition of theft. You were, of course, meaning 1978 - an Act of which relatively little remains. The Theft Act 1978 was a short Act to start with and only the s. 3 offence of making off without payment remains law.

I think another possibility here is using a false instrument, contrary to s. 3 Forgery and Counterfeiting Act 1981. That offence does not include dishonesty in its mens rea which is potentially an advantage for the prosecution.

I don't have a sufficiently up to date copy of Archbold to hand to see whether there is anything mentioned there in connection with rail tickets - my paper copy is a few years old and in storage whilst I do not currently have access to the online edition.
 

Roy Badami

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I get the impression that the old Conditions of Carriage were slightly confused as to whether they were trying to be a set of contractual terms or an explanation of the law of agency.

If a employee of a company buys a ticket in the course of their duties, then I would have thought that it is probably the case that they were acting as an agent of the company when entering into the transaction. If that is the case, then the contract for carriage is between the railway and the company, not between the railway and the particular individual employee. Therefore there would be no problem in the company subsequently using the ticket for another employee's travel. At least, if by purchasing a ticket "on behalf of" someone else, they mean something other than purchasing it as their agent, it's not at all clear exactly what they mean by it.

It's all pretty much academic now, anyway, with the new rules.
 

Haywain

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That is assuming they are counterfeit and not genuine tickets being illegally produced, eg by a staff member with acess to a machine somewhere.
That would be a fairly short lived arrangement as the lack of payments would come to light very quickly.
 

krus_aragon

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That would be a fairly short lived arrangement as the lack of payments would come to light very quickly.
Historically, there was a case of a stolen Avantix machine being fed with ticket stock to produce stacks of travelcards. That went on for a while, iirc. The only means of identifying them as fraudulent was to recognise the issuing machine number printed on the front.
 

sheff1

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There was another historic case which went on for some time. When it was eventually spotted the perpetrator fled to Ireland, using one last fraudulent ticket on the ferry.
 

6Gman

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Historically, there was a case of a stolen Avantix machine being fed with ticket stock to produce stacks of travelcards. That went on for a while, iirc. The only means of identifying them as fraudulent was to recognise the issuing machine number printed on the front.
There used to be a weekly circular for rail staff which used to contain information such as:

MISSING TICKETS - 2nd Class Day Return Wolverhampton - Euston, numbered 110201-110300. If presented please report to xxxxxxxx.

Not sure what the chances were of any member of staff checking such details.

(The circular was an interesting read - it also listed missing luggage and missing rolling stock ! Long before the days of TOPS. Also iirc listed "persons of interest".)
 

broadgage

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As many others have posted, this sounds very dodgy, and I add my voice to those urging not to get involved.

I feel however that the rail industry have partly brought this and related problems upon them selves.
Back in the good old days, tickets were purchased at stations, or less commonly from a rail appointed travel agent. Any tickets offered by a "bloke down the pub" were rightly treated with great suspicion.
These days however rail ticketing is hugely complex, and we are urged to "look on line for the best deals" various legitimate agencies also offer rail tickets.
There are certainly some bargains to be found on line !
Time to simplify fares and also to restrict ticket sales to stations, and to ONE official website/telephone sales center.
 

Fawkes Cat

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Back in the good old days, tickets were purchased at stations, or less commonly from a rail appointed travel agent. Any tickets offered by a "bloke down the pub" were rightly treated with great suspicion.
These days however rail ticketing is hugely complex, and we are urged to "look on line for the best deals" various legitimate agencies also offer rail tickets.
There are certainly some bargains to be found on line !
Time to simplify fares and also to restrict ticket sales to stations, and to ONE official website/telephone sales center.
Are people really unable to distinguish between a website and a man in the pub?
 

Fawkes Cat

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Yes, in most cases, but some websites ARE the modern equivalent of the "bloke down the pub"
In which case, the solution isn't restricting sales to stations and one website: it's making it clear what is an authorised website, and taking action to close down unauthorised sites.
 

wandacat

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Yes, in most cases, but some websites ARE the modern equivalent of the "bloke down the pub"
I am informed that the contact took place via a local What’s App group. I’m not sure closing What’s App down would be popular.

My friend has had no physical interaction with the seller of the E Tickets
 

Llanigraham

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Time to simplify fares and also to restrict ticket sales to stations, and to ONE official website/telephone sales center.
1/ Many stations do not have ticket offices or machines, and machines are not able to issue all tyoes of tickets.
2/ Only one retailer outside of the above would be a monopoly and that would be illegal.
 

Qwerty133

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There used to be a weekly circular for rail staff which used to contain information such as:

MISSING TICKETS - 2nd Class Day Return Wolverhampton - Euston, numbered 110201-110300. If presented please report to xxxxxxxx.

Not sure what the chances were of any member of staff checking such details.

(The circular was an interesting read - it also listed missing luggage and missing rolling stock ! Long before the days of TOPS. Also iirc listed "persons of interest".)
Exactly how did BR manage to misplace locomotives, units, or coaches on a regular enough basis that they had a specific way of publicising it?
 

6Gman

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Exactly how did BR manage to misplace locomotives, units, or coaches on a regular enough basis that they had a specific way of publicising it?
To be fair, I don't ever recall a loco being listed. :D

But in those days the carriage fleet was huge, including hundreds of parcels vehicles.

There was a "control" for such things but if they believed M30786M was at Crewe, but Crewe insisted it wasn't (perhaps it had been shunted onto something it shouldn't have been shunted onto) then it was then a game of "hunt the van".
 

Hadders

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Interesting article on the Leicester Mercury website. This describes an Underground ticketing scam but I bet similar scams exist for National Rail tickets.

https://www.leicestermercury.co.uk/news/leicester-news/police-raided-leicester-homes-uncover-3894039

Police were forced to raid Leicester homes to uncover a massive £8m London Underground scam.
Ticket inspectors started spotting fake train tickets back in October 2017, the British Transport Police launched an investigation.
For all intents and purposes, the tickets look very real, reports MyLondon.
They worked on ticket barriers, and covered weekly and monthly rail travel between zones one and six.
But the gang were selling them for around half the price of regular tickets. All in all it's estimated the scam cost operators around £8 million while it ran between 2016 and 2019.

The ringleaders
One of the ringleaders was Manuel Da Costa Silva.
He became a prime suspect at an early stage in the investigation as he was the distributer and part of an organised crime group which produced and sold the tickets in London.



Ringleader Manuel Da Costa was prime suspect from an early stage
The scam was described as a pyramid scheme.
Silva would receive mass quantities of fake tickets and pass them onto lower level distributers, who would either sell them to customers or sell them in bulk to even lower level distributers.
The 29-year-old made a huge profit from the scam. Prosecutors noted his love of designer label clothes and his expensive cars, a Porsche Panamera and a BMW I8.



Brothers Stefan and Sorin Covrig manufactured the tickets (Pictured - Stefan)


Two brothers, Stefan and Sorin Covrig, and a third man, Ciprian Buda, were the manufacturers of the tickets.
They used blank tickets, card readers, computer programs and printers to produce fake tickets on a massive scale.
When officers raided their homes, almost 60,000 blank tickets were found. If they were turned into the fake train tickets, they would have made the gang around £20 million.



Sorin Covrig was part of the highly illegal pyramid scheme
The police investigation
The police spent months investigating this gang, raiding London and Leicester homes before arresting Silva, Sorin Covrig and Buda.
Nine more people were identified and arrested for working with the group.
The 13 members appeared for sentencing at Inner London Crown Court on Friday February 14. All members were charged with fraud. and the four ringleaders were jailed for a total of 24 years.
DC Nick Barr from the British Transport Police, said: "The actions of this gang pulled money that could’ve been used to fund security, trains and other rail services across London.



The blank tickets seized by the police would have fetched around £20 million if the gang had used them


"They all made a profit, with the ring leaders earning hundreds of thousands of pounds. This money isn’t theirs to keep and we are using the law to strip them of their assets.
We’ve already seized £300,000 worth of homes bought by Stefan Covrig in Romania and taken Silva’s cars."
Siwan Hayward, director of compliance and policing at TfL, said: "Organised fraud like this is rare and we have robust controls in place to identify and stop illegal activity.
"Our team of 450 revenue inspectors operates across our network day and night and includes a specialist counterfeit ticket team who detected these fake National Rail tickets circulating on our network.
"This scam defrauded the public of millions of pounds that should have been invested in the transport network. We have a zero tolerance approach to any fraud on our network and welcome the news that these criminals have been brought to justice."



Ciprian Buda also helped to manufactured the tickets
A full list of the gang members
Ringleaders

Stefan Covrig, 35, of Billet a Road in Chadwell Heath, London, was jailed for seven years and six months
Sorin Covrig, 23, of Billet Road, Chadwell Heath, London, was jailed for four years and six months.
Ciprian Buda, 42, of Billet Road, Chadwell Heath, London, was jailed for four years and six months.
Manuel Da Costa Silva, 29, of Long Bridge Road, Barking, London was jailed for seven years and six months. He was also sentenced for money laundering.

Other members


Ciprian Dumitru-Stefan, 39, of Prince Regent Lane in West Bekton, London, was jailed for 11 months. He was also sentenced for money laundering.
Yusuf Bello, 27, of Prince Regent Lane in Wesy Beckton, London, was jailed for 15 months.
Rodney Capemba, 27, of Great Eastern Road, Stratford, London, was jailed for 18 months.
Mamadu Conte, 31, of Verdant Lane, Lewisham, London was jailed for 15 months.
A member of the group who can’t be named for legal reasons was jailed for 15 months.

Adrian Morarescu, 49, of Dunkeld Road, Dagenham, London, was given a 14-month suspended sentence.
Joao Pedro Martins Garcia, 33, of Eade Road, Tottenham, London was given a 150-hour community order.
Dong Nguyen, 33, of Wick Road, Hackney, London, received 120 hours of unpaid work.
Joanna Li, 26, of Meredith Street, Plaistow, London, received an 11-month suspended sentence and 100 hours of unpaid work.
 

swt_passenger

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LowLevel

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Exactly how did BR manage to misplace locomotives, units, or coaches on a regular enough basis that they had a specific way of publicising it?
It still happens now let alone back when individual vehicles were shunted in and out of trains on a regular basis. More than once I've had a message pop up on my phone along the lines of 'if anyone has seen unit xxx recently can they let control know where it is'. Mostly human error with stock allocation or misinterpreting what to use on which train nowadays.

Back then it was mostly stock being knocked out of trains due to faults or similar and left in strange places. There has been some interesting stuff elsewhere about the Exeter area stealing individual carriages off trains during turnarounds in the 80s to address a rolling stock shortage and denying their presence as long as possible as another enterprising example.
 
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