15 Aug 2009.
For immediate release.

Contact the ABD

Press Release

Innocent Drivers To Be Treated Like Witches
Ministry of 'Justice' proposals hark back to the Middle Ages.
From October, drivers who defend themselves against a motoring charge will have to pay the bulk of their costs, even if found not guilty 1. They will only be able to reclaim costs equivalent to the rate for legal aid, which is considerably lower than that applied by solicitors to private clients. So drivers who know they are innocent face the choice of pleading guilty and being punished for a crime they did not commit, or prove their innocence and be punished financially.
ABD spokesman Nigel Humphries comments,
“This is like the way witches were tried in the Middle Ages — throw them into a pond and, if they float, they are guilty and burned at the stake. If they drown they are innocent, but they're just as dead! This type of justice has no place in the 21st century.”
The new system is clearly designed to discourage drivers from seeking justice and is discriminatory against a large section of the population. Drivers are automatically assumed to be guilty, yet there have been many cases where drivers have been accused unjustly, especially for speeding. As Nigel Humphries remarks:
“Local authorities often fail in their duty to provide and maintain the signs legally required to show what speed limits apply, and some speed measuring devices used by the police have been shown capable of giving seriously inaccurate readings. It is quite wrong that drivers should be prevented from defending themselves in such cases.“
ABD Chairman Brian Gregory added:
“I find it ironic that whilst the government has done much to eliminate the evils of discrimination against many sections of society, it is itself the main protagonist in the discrimination against drivers.”

1. Daily Mail 2009-08-15
Notes for Editors about the ABD