The police sent the notice out to me asking for driver information combined with the notice of intended prosecution by first class post. I received it and responded naming myself as the driver. I sent my response back by first class post. I’ve now received a summons to court. The police are suggesting that they did not receive my response. I did give the information. Do I have a defence?
Yes you do have a defence. This is on the basis that you gave the information. Assuming you completed the S172 form properly and nominated the person who was driving at the time and signed the form.
If you sent the notice back by first class post then you are entitled to rely on the same evidential presumption of service that the police rely on when they send the notices out in the first place. If you are arguing that you gave the information then it is for the prosecution to prove beyond reasonable doubt that you did not.
The evidential presumption of service that you gain by sending the notice back I first class post will help you to create a doubt on their suggestion that the information was not given. This is a very complicated area of law. The magistrates and the Crown Prosecution Service often apply the burden of proof incorrectly.
They often try to make you prove on the balance of probabilities that the information was given. This is not the correct approach to this type of argument. Please do not assume that the magistrates/Crown Prosecution Service lawyer will have a clear understanding of this very specialist area of law.
We know that you will be shocked to think that perhaps in a court of law the lawyers present would get the law wrong, but we have first-hand experience of this happening on a regular basis and the court clearly applying the wrong principle.