I have received a Summons for failing to identify driver, but the photo does not show/prove who was driving. Do I have a defence?
There is no obligation for photographic evidence to show who was driving. The purpose of the photograph is to identify the vehicle so it would normally focus on the number plate. The Police do not have to show who was driving. All the Police need to do is prove the identity of the vehicle and that they have asked the registered keeper to identify the driver at the time of the alleged offence. That request shifts the burden onto the keeper. An offence is committed if no driver identification is given unless you are able to provide a satisfactory explanation as to why it is impossible to establish the driver’s identity.
I received a Notice of Intended Prosecution but I cannot be sure who was driving at the time of the offence. When I asked for the photographic evidence, it simply initiated Court proceedings for failing to supply the identity of the driver. Do I have a valid claim as I have reason to believe that the ‘evidence’ in question is weak and when I asked for the evidence I am simply summonsed to Court?
There is a strict obligation to reply to a Notice of Intended Prosecution within 28 days. If you do not supply the identity of the driver in that time, it can be argued that you have failed to meet your obligation. If you do not know who was driving, but believe the photograph will assist you, you should ask to see same but when requesting a photograph, you should ask that your time for supplying the information be extended until you have had ample opportunity to consider the evidence. Although the Process Unit do not have to co-operate, they would normally do so and if a Summons were issued in these circumstances, the Court will not be overly impressed, given that you can show a genuine effort to deal with the matter.