A blue badge cheat has been disqualified from driving as Redbridge Council continues its crackdown on abuse of the permits.
Shakeel Ahmad, from Tunstall Avenue, Ilford, was banned from driving for 56 days after pleading guilty to wrongful use of disabled person’s badge at Barkingside Magistrates Court on Friday August 16.
Along with the driving disqualification, Ahmad was also hit with a £50 fine and ordered to pay costs of £220. A victim surcharge of £30 was also imposed.
The court heard how the 38-year-old had fraudulently used the blue badge permit to park in the Town Hall car park in Chadwick Road, Ilford earlier this year.
The court proceedings mark the start of a tougher approach to people who abuse blue badges.
Blue badge permits are designed to give those with serious mobility issues and disabilities the opportunity to manage their lives more easily by offering greater freedom and flexibility to park in the borough.
Redbridge Council is taking a zero-tolerance stance against this type of crime to ensure the protection of its disabled parking provision.
Cllr Helen Coomb, cabinet member for transformation and engagement, said: “Blue badges are a vital lifeline for many of our most vulnerable residents, helping them maintain independence and access to their local community.
“People who fraudulently use a blue badge prevent those in genuine need from accessing on-street parking where and when they need it most.
“This kind of selfish and illegal behaviour will not be tolerated in our borough.
“We are committed to protecting disabled parking provision and I’m pleased to say there are more prosecutions on the way. Our message is very clear: if you misuse a blue badge, you will be prosecuted.”
Blue badges can only be used by the named badge holder, either as a passenger or driver. Misuse is a criminal offence and can result in a maximum fine of £1,000.
For more information on the blue badge scheme in Redbridge, go to www.redbridge.gov.uk/parking/blue-badge/
To report suspected blue badge fraud, call 0800 633 5267 or email firstname.lastname@example.org