Why we're here:
This blog is to highlight the unjust persecution of legitimate non-TV users at the hands of TV Licensing. These people do not require a licence and are entitled to live without the unnecessary stress and inconvenience caused by TV Licensing's correspondence and employees.

If you use equipment to receive live broadcast TV programmes, or to watch or download on-demand programmes via the BBC iPlayer, then the law requires you to have a licence and we encourage you to buy one.

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Saturday, 15 March 2014

TV Licensing's Latest Court Defeat

TV Licensing has recently experienced defeat at Liverpool Crown Court, when the judge decided to overturn another of their more dubious Magistrates' Court prosecutions.

Lee's story, which we consider the tip of a very large iceberg, reaffirms our long-held belief that some TV Licensing goons try to get a result (thus bump up their commission) by whatever means they can. Experience shows that a significant proportion of TV Licensing employees cannot be trusted, so anyone who legitimately does not require a TV licence, just like Lee, is strongly advised to avoid all contact with them.

Lee tells his story below:

On 18th October 2013 I had a knock at my door. I was confronted by a Marstons debt collection agent, who informed he had come to enforce a warrant for non-payment of a £250 fine, plus costs making it up to £350 in total. Apparently I had been using a TV illegally without a licence.

I contacted the Liverpool Magistrates' Court where, unknown to me, I was convicted and a sentence passed in my absence on 9th November 2011. It turned out that a doorstep agent from TV Licensing (Capita) had knocked on an ex-partner's address. Whatever transpired there ended up by me having a TV licence put into name, which involved someone signing my signature on the declaration form. Basically, a TV licence was fraudulently put in my name. This case was taken to court without any attempt to ensure the correct person was named on the licence. In my absence, due to the fact I had no clue about it, I was tried and convicted.

Not being able to attend the court to make a Statutory Declaration I had to write to the Crown Court to make an out-of-time appeal. This was first refused due to a Crown Court Judge deciding that I had not given enough evidence to prove I had never lived at the said address. Writing back to the Crown Court I included a written statement from Liverpool City Council stating that I had never been a resident at the said address and reiterating my threat to take the court procedure further. 

On the 10th March 2014 my appeal was allowed and the conviction overturned.

It infuriates me to think that some members of the public would receive these fines and pay it purely out of fear of receiving a criminal conviction. To those people I say DON'T! Stand up and fight, I am now in the process of suing TV Licensing (Capita Business Services Ltd) for negligence. When a doorstep agent attends an address ID should be shown to the agent by the person who is signing the declaration. This will ensure that TV Licensing has the correct individual's name, rather than allowing anyone to claim they are someone else. This is what I will be fighting for. I will also be seeking damages for myself and my partner, as this whole process put a lot of stress on us both. We have wrongly had to endure debt collectors and High Court Enforcement Officers waiting outside our house to pounce on any opportunity to take our personal belongings. All this hassle for a TV licence fraudulently put in my name.


Ray Turner said...

The whole TV Licensing system is wrong, starting with the age-old problem of the BBC attempting to charge people for services that they don't actually use.

The TV Licence made sense when it was first introduced, when there was only one TV channel to watch and no practical way of recording programmes. In 1946, the situation was black & white. If you had a TV in your house you needed a TV licence.

Times have changed, technoology has changed and the TV licence makes no sense whatsoever these days. It seems it is only the establishment figures who live a life of luxury off the back of the TV Licence who want to perpetuate it...

admin said...

Thanks for your comment Ray, with which I heartily agree.

Anonymous said...

I agree with the sentiment of Ray Turner's post, but factually he is quite wrong.

When the BBC replaced the BBCo., it was, of course, for radio transmissions. I suppose, nowadays, it should be considered unfair that people listening for radio should have it paid for by others.

It is worth remembering that the BBC was set up to replace a failed commercial effort. This was before programme sponsorship, advertising and subscription were proven to be viable.

I think we've reached the stage when the licence fee has become a laughable anachronism.

AndyH said...

I am quite happy to listen to the radio for free. If the BBC want to give the service away then who am I to complain? I haven't had a TV for in excess of a decade and no intention of ever getting one, but the more work I can cause Capita in trying to collect a fee that is not due the more I like it.

Let's have a encrypted subscription service and be rid of Capita and the quarter wits that they employ.

M Lockyer said...

My boyfriend was contacted by Historic Debts on CHRISTMAS EVE 2016, chasing an unpaid fine. Not only was he not the legal tenant of the property, he can PROVE THAT HE WAS NOT EVEN IN THE UK AT ALL on the date whoever was there was door stepped. He has made a statutory declaration on 18/01/2017 which was accepted by the Court, the case was re opened and should have been heard by the original court which closed 7 years ago, so instead the Court which supervised that court was asked to hear the case, and Capita's prosecuting agents looked at all the paperwork, that is the statutory declaration and copies of Johns passport, and told the Court to withdraw the case, ie not hear it. THAT IS PEREVERTING THE COURSE OF JUSTICE, the fine may have been cancelled, but the conviction has not been quashed and I now think other cases exist where no proof of ID was ever sought, nor checks made with public records and I am now starting to think Lee's is not an isolated case, and they want to prevent an inquiry which would re open hundreds if not thousands of cases of injustice.