People warned to pay fines after Porsche driver’s car clamped

The courts service has warned people not to ignore fines after a drink-driver who failed to pay a penalty saw his Porsche sports car clamped by enforcement officers.

The 38-year-old, from Falkirk, was disqualified from driving for 12 months and ordered to pay £520 when he was convicted at Falkirk Justice of the Peace Court in September last year, the Scottish Courts and Tribunals Service (SCTS) said.

But his vehicle was clamped outside his home after he did not respond to several requests for payment and a warning letter.

SCTS said that meant the driver had to pay his fine and settle clamping and seizure expenses before his car was released.

Latest figures from SCTS show collection rates across all fine and penalty types continued to improve in recent months, with the three-year collection rate showing 86% of fines paid or on track to be paid within sheriff courts as at October 17 2022.

SCTS urged those facing financial hardship to seek advice rather than just ignoring fines.

David Fraser, SCTS executive director of court operations, said: “The latest figures continue to show welcome progress as we recover from the effects of the pandemic, with fine collection rates rising across the board.

“We continue to recognise that the current economic climate may impact on people’s ability to pay fines and urge anyone who is struggling to pay to get in touch with us so we can provide advice.

“However, just ignoring fines and doing nothing is not an option. We will employ robust sanctions against offenders who we are satisfied have failed to pay without a reasonable excuse.

“As we have seen in this case, this can involve cars being clamped and seized. Fines Enforcement Units can also freeze bank accounts, arrest earnings, make deductions from benefits, or obtain arrest warrants.

“So please make sure you contact us to make suitable arrangements to pay and avoid any of this action being taken.”

The fines collection rates cover a three-year period over the financial years 2019/20, 2020/21, 2021/22.

Within justice of the peace courts, the proportion of fines imposed between 2019/2020 and 2021/22 which were paid or on track to be paid was at 85% last month.

SCTS said penalties collected under the victim surcharge, which provides funds to victim services, have continued to progress, with £116,000 collected in the last quarter.

The total now sits at £664,000 or 80% of the value of such penalties issued to June 30 2022 now paid.