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8 Jul 2013

Crooked estate agent used wife's disabled blue badge

A crooked yet able-bodied estate agent must complete 220 hours of community service after being been caught using his wife’s "lost" blue badge. (h/t Dave)

Atique Ul-Rehman, from Stane Close, Wimbledon, used his wife's disabled parking permit to park outside the Residenza Properties estate agency, in Tooting Bec Road, which is owned by his son.

Mrs Ul-Rehman had previously reported the badge as lost and was sent a replacement by Merton Council which she was using in her own vehicle.

The 48-year-old estate agent was spotted on numerous occasions driving a company car from his Wimbledon home to his son’s office.

He was parking free of charge all day in Wheatlands Road, Tooting, apart from when he ferried potential buyers and tenants to view properties all over Tooting and Balham.

When he was caught he initially denied any wrongdoing and entered pleas of not guilty to all charges at an earlier hearing.

However on the day of the trial he suddenly changed his plea to guilty at the last minute and admitted eight counts of fraud.

After entering his pleas, he told the court that he could not pay a large fine because he only earned a meagre £48 a week in wages - even though he appeared to be there most days.

Really? His son was paying his dad £48 a week?

Wimbledon Magistrates, sitting on June 27, told the 48-year-old he was lucky to avoid an immediate jail sentence and instead ordered him to complete 220 hours of community service.

He will have to work unpaid for the equivalent of more than 27 working days picking up litter, painting over graffiti, tidying open spaces and completing other tasks on behalf of the wider community.

He was also ordered to pay £250 towards the council’s prosecution costs.

As a result of Wandsworth Council’s legal actions more than £600,000 has been being returned to the public purse in fines and court costs.

Anyone with information about blue badge misuse can contact the council's team of investigators by calling freephone number 0800 085 0866 or emailing parking@wandsworth.gov.uk

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