Driver used dead man’s blue badge to park outside Wakefield Council office where it was issued

Picture of parking ticket issued for abusing blue badge scheme
Picture of parking ticket issued for abusing blue badge scheme

A driver used a dead man’s blue badge to park on a Wakefield street, a court heard.

But Chris Warriner, 53, had the misfortune to park his silver Mercedes near Wakefield One where they issue blue badges for disabled people.

Exterior of Wakefield One.'w315a253

Exterior of Wakefield One.'w315a253

He became the first person to be prosecuted by Wakefield Council for abusing the free parking scheme following a government clampdown.

Prosecutor Jackie Banham said: “The council aim to target those who abuse and defraud the system, this can be for example family and friends using the blue badge for free parking when the badge holder is not present.”

City magistrates heard how civic patroller Anthony Hollas spotted Warriner’s car on Burton Street where there is on-street pay and display. The vehicle was displaying a blue badge but Mr Hollas was suspicious of the 2014 expiry date.

Investigations revealed the badge belonged to Derrick Higgins, of Eastmoor, who died in August 2010. His badge was valid until December 2011.

Warriner, of Aberford Road, was invited to Wakefield One for interview under caution where he admitted the offence.

And he pleaded guilty by post to abusing the blue badge scheme.

His letter to the court gave no details of mitigation, just financial information.

The court heard the maximum fine was £1,000 but magistrates gave Warriner credit for pleading guilty. He was fined £300 and told to pay £100 costs and a £30 victim surcharge.

After the case Coun Graham Stokes, cabinet member for corporate services, said: “It is ironic that this driver was caught outside the blue badge licensing office at Wakefield One where parking is just 80p an hour. The fine issued by the magistrates endorses our determination to take action against people who misuse blue badges, which are issued to support people in genuine need. I hope this sends out a clear message that we will not tolerate anyone tampering with or abusing a scheme which is a lifeline to many people.”