A man whose mother had died a year previously was caught using her blue-badge disabled motorist permit, and then told officers that, far from being dead, she was at home.
After failing to appear before Croydon magistrates on Tuesday (2), Chris Mason, 53, of Beech House Road, Croydon, was convicted in his absence, fined £500, and ordered to pay £325 costs and £50 victim surcharge.
The court heard that, on 27 September 2016 he attended Croydon Council’s offices, hoping to be rehoused following eviction for non-payment of the rent at his previous address.
Displaying a blue-badge parking permit, he parked his Ford Capri in Fell Road. Enquiries revealed that his mother had died during the previous September, and a death certificate was obtained.
On a second visit to the council’s offices, he again parked his car – on this occasion a BMW – in Mint Walk, and again displayed his mother’s blue badge in order to avoid paying a parking fee.
When approached by a council investigation officer, Mason claimed that it was “news to him” that his mother had died, and that she was ”at home, sitting on the sofa”.
In addition to failing to attend his court hearing, Mason failed to respond to two invitations to interviews with officers.
Councillor Hamida Ali, cabinet member for communities, safety and justice
“This is an astonishing case in which, as well as illegally using his dead mother’s parking permit, he denies that she has died and is actually waiting for him at home.
“This is a flagrant breach of the law which not only sees him gaining personal advantage, but deprives someone who genuinely needs to be able to park in that location of the opportunity to do so.
“We have a good record of clamping down on the fraudulent use of blue badges, and intend to carry on bringing the perpetrators to book.”