Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Police use loophole to dodge fines

MORE than 100 police issued with fines for breaking road laws have escaped punishment because they refused to admit they were driving.

The 138 incidents of running red lights and speeding by up to 40km/h over the limit involved officers who were not actively pursuing criminals and not rushing to crime scenes.

Victoria Police said it was unable to identify the driver in all the incidents - leading to fines being scrapped - despite admitting officers signed a log book each time they used a vehicle.

As debate rages about the accuracy of speed cameras, documents released under Freedom of Information reveal 1477 infringements were issued to police for non-operational offences in the past five years.

But 61 per cent of those were then dropped by Victoria Police. Ordinary members of the public who appeal against a fine are let off in only 3 per cent of cases.

The statistics show Victoria Police failed to recoup $109,280 by not enforcing fines against its officers.

The revelations prompted criticism from Police Minister Peter Ryan.

"Except ... where duty requires, police officers should have to comply with the road rules like all other drivers," Mr Ryan said.

On one occasion a Victoria Police vehicle was detected speeding 40km/h above the road limit. The driver should have been banned from driving for six months, had six demerit points added to their licence and paid a $519 fine.

Instead, Victoria Police said it was "unable to identify" the driver.

A further 769 offenders - breaking road rules in their squad cars but not in the pursuit of crime - were simply told not to do it again.

Officers escaped receiving 916 demerit points - enough to ban 76 cops.

Rose Sutera, whose son Anthony died at the hands of a speeding driver in Mill Park last year, said police should not speed unless fighting crime.

"It's a disgrace and just wrong," Ms Sutera said.

"Why is it one rule for them and another for us?"

Victoria Police said the figures were "disappointing".

"Police officers are expected to set an example in obeying speed limits," a spokeswoman said. "It is disappointing a number of police officers have been detected when not exempt from the road rules."

But the force argued police officers had been "penalised accordingly".

"Police, as with all members of the community, are able to apply for an official warning under strict criteria," the spokeswoman said.

"This includes an admission of guilt, a speed under 10km/h over the limit, and a good driving record with no infringements issued for the previous two years.

"Warnings are an officially recorded sanction - once you receive an official warning motorists are not eligible to apply again."

In dozens of incidents where the driver was detected speeding between 10km/h and 40km/h above the limit, Victoria Police said it was unable to identify the driver and no one was penalised in any way.

heraldsun.com.au 11 Sep 2011

Another example of a corrupt government, this time in the hands of police, again, with the full extent of the corrupt judicial system supporting the police.

This is showing the masses that the police are above the law, and corrupt judges are dismissing the matters in pre-court conferences.

Matters are discussed and concluded at the brotherhood's lodge meetings before they make it to the court rooms.

No one from the mass media dares to report this.

The 'loopholes' are specially created, so that the authorities are able to 'get away with it' whereas this does not apply to Mr. Joe Citizen.

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