How can I be prosecuted for a driving offence when my motorcycle's number plates were cloned?

My local council, Hammersmith & Fulham, recently sent through the post a 'moving ticket offence' notice, my motorbike having been photographed to the right of a keep left sign. I wrote to the council explaining I was not responsible for the offence as it was not me riding my bike at the time. I showed proof that my bike was in the local garage having repairs that day and explained I was at work all day. This made no difference to the council who did not accept my representations. It replied explaining 'drivers have a responsibility to comply with all signs and markings....' but then continued to say it is the 'keeper' of the vehicle who is responsible for the fine.

Unfortunately the motorbike garage has since closed down and I cannot recover the fine from them. Furthermore I cannot appeal. Although the offence possibly happened, not personally committing an offence is not one of the five grounds under which an appeal can be submitted. How is it fair or just I have had to pay the fine myself, for an offence that has nothing whatsoever to do with me - and I cannot appeal?

Asked on 25 February 2012 by AF, London SW6

Answered by Honest John
This is a fundamental problem with the arrogance of convicting people on the basis of a vehicle number plate. No allowance is made for the possibilities that the plate could have been cloned or that a mistake was made or that the person driving the vehicle at the time cannot be identified. There is no facility on the form to inform the issuing authority that it made a mistake. This doesn't help you, but until the system acknowledges cloned plates, mistakes, and circumstances such as yours, injustices will continue.
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