Cocaine-addicted tester blasted by judge after issuing fraudulent pass certificates

Tester passed cars without seeing them and had £50 knocked off his drug debt for each pass

Cocaine-addicted tester blasted by judge after issuing fraudulent pass certificates
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A cocaine-addicted MOT tester has been handed a 14-month jail term, suspended for two years with 30 days’ rehabilitation activity and 180 hours’ unpaid work, with £1,997 costs.

Carl Fletcher claimed to have been pressured by his dealers to pay off a drug debt by issuing fraudulent MOT certificates without having seen the vehicles, Teeside Live has reported.

The Crown said he deceptively put up to 100 vehicles back on the road – though Fletcher said it was “75 to 80 cars”.

At Teesside Crown Court, prosecutor Eddison Flint said: “There could have been unsafe, potentially even dangerous, cars on the road.”

Related: MOT backlog to peak in October, DVSA data suggests

Judge Jonathan Carroll blasted Fletcher for his reckless dishonesty which risked the reputation of his employers, a respected family-run garage which had traded for 45 years.

The judge said: “You are there to keep you, your wife, your children, the prison officer you’re stood next to, my court staff, your dad and everybody else safe by vehicles that are safe going on to public roads.

“You completely and utterly abrogated that responsibility because you were a drug addict.

“And to feed your own cocaine habit you were prepared to do anything.

“You were prepared to lose your wife and your kids.

“You didn’t give a damn”

“You were prepared to lose your job with your dad.

“Imagine that, being sacked by your own dad because of your drug addiction.

“You then took this job and from the off you were working with your drug dealers to get them cars that never saw sight nor sound of the garage.

“You had no idea if they were death traps or not.

“You didn’t give a damn.”

GW Podcast: Managing MOT demand in your garage

Fletcher admitted 21 offences of fraud.

Fletcher passed the vehicles without seeing them while working at a Middlesbrough garage from September to November 2018, magistrates heard previously.

He lied to investigators at first, saying the tests were carried out at a different site but later confessed to issuing certificates to vehicles he had never examined.

He said he got a phone call from an unnamed creditor, to whom to owed £2,200 plus interest for drugs, giving details of a car and telling him to “put a test on it”.

He told how £50 was knocked off his debt each time he gave a fraudulent certificate.

Fletcher said he was threatened that the garage would be smashed up or burned down.

“A fundamentally dishonest act over an extended period”

The judge added: “What you did was driving a coach and horses through the potential reputation of that garage that’s just trying to earn an honest crust.

“A fundamentally dishonest act over an extended period of time, a substantial number of vehicles.

“The harm in cash terms in relatively modest, £2,000 to £2,500, but the reality of this case is not about about cash.

“It’s about the safety.”

He was dismissed from his job at the family firm, which took a strong line on his activities and took care to identify the vehicles involved, the court was told.

Related: DVSA outlines changes to MOT policy

John Nixon, defending, said Fletcher found himself “between a rock and a hard place” through coercion, intimidation and exploitation.

He said the married dad’s life collapsed around him in 2018 as he became dependent on cocaine and mired in debt.

“There is no evidence in fact that any harm was caused,” argued Mr Nixon.

“Not every vehicle fails its MOT.”

Mr Nixon added prison would have a “catastrophic” impact on his family, with whom he was now reconciled.

He said Fletcher had worked hard all his life, now had a new job in another industry and was seeking help and treatment.

For these reasons, Judge Carroll gave him a 14-month jail term suspended for two years with 30 days’ rehabilitation activity and 180 hours’ unpaid work, with £1,997 costs.

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Home Page Forums Cocaine-addicted tester blasted by judge after issuing fraudulent pass certificates

Viewing 4 posts - 1 through 4 (of 4 total)
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  • #198615 Reply
    Dougal
    Guest

    “Not every vehicle fails its MOT.”
    If the vehicles were going to pass you would be a fool to pay £50 for a backdoor MOT.

    #198620 Reply
    Graham Bullock
    Guest

    A 14-month jail term, suspended for two years with 30 days’ rehabilitation activity and 180 hours’ unpaid work, with £1,997 costs for giving a pass certificate for around 80 to 100 potentially damgerous vehicles.

    What about the millions of potentially dangerous vehicles that DVSA gave pass certificates to without seeing those vehicles?

    The judge said it was not about money, “It’s about the safety”, surely the same should apply for the DVSA.

    #198621 Reply
    john philips
    Guest

    JUST ANOTHER EXAMPLE OF SNOWFLAKE JUSTICE ,THE CROWN NEEDS TO JAIL EVERYONE ONE OF THESE CROOKS OR ELSE THERES NO DETERRENT

    #198624 Reply
    David
    Guest

    While I agree that you must not test or issue test documentation to a vehicle when you are not medical fit and well, I also agree with Graham above and think that DVSA’s powers that be could have used better understanding of the current pandemic and not issued everyone with a 6 months mot extension. It is one man Vs Government here, but both parties have done the same thing, and that it potentially put dangerous vehicles on the roads.

    I’ll be nothing would be said to the DfT or DVSA about that!

Viewing 4 posts - 1 through 4 (of 4 total)

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