Fare dodger caught on London train and forced to pay £10k fine after nearly 5 years of evasion

A commuter passes a c2c passenger train at Fenchurch Street Station in London
c2c trains travel between London and Essex -Credit:Simon Dawson/Bloomberg via Getty Images

A person has been forced to pay a £10,000 fine after avoiding travel payments for nearly five years. Operator c2c - which manages services in East London and Essex - says the 'persistent evader' was caught and ordered to fork out the cash due to historic unpaid fares dating back to 2019.

They were recently discovered travelling through one of c2c's London stations (services travel from Rainham and Dagenham Dock in the east to Fenchurch Street and Liverpool Street in the centre of the capital) and asked to present their rail ticket to a revenue protection officer as part of a routine inspection. Officials say the customer did not have a valid ticket for the full length of the journey they had just made, and, after further investigation, it was found that the customer had been making this same trip and 'cheating the system' for nearly five years.

It comes as c2c has announced that ongoing work to crack down on payment dodging across its routes has so far been a 'great success', with around £130,000 received in fines and penalty payments so far this year. Operating in partnership with the British Transport Police, the work of c2c's revenue protection and security teams has led to more than £315,000 being received in penalty fares and fines, the operator says.

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People wait for a train at Liverpool Street station
c2c trains travel between Essex and major London stations -Credit:Carl Court/Getty Images

Iain Palmer, c2c's head of revenue protection and security, said: "Fare evasion, whether deliberately or inadvertently, is a criminal offence and c2c will always look to prosecute those who attempt to cheat the system. We have recently increased the number of Revenue Protection officers patrolling our stations and trains, especially during the off-peak, and we now have more eyes and ears monitoring and closing in on customers who frequently travel without a valid ticket."

"Our work to crackdown on fare evasion isn't just about catching and issuing penalty fares to customers who travel without a ticket, the intelligence provided by our digital sales channels and ticket barriers also help us identify those using c2c services without a valid ticket for the entirety of their journey."

c2c says it offers a wide range of ticketing options to 'suit customers' needs and travel patterns'. These are available to purchase either online, in app, at ticket offices or from ticket machines.

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