A Bristol MOT tester has been successfully prosecuted by The Driver and Vehicle Standards Agency (DVSA) after he carried out sub-standard MOTs in a layby in Keynsham.
On 3 July 2019 at Bristol Magistrates Court, Paul Court-Chandler, 47 of Pretoria Road, Patchway in Bristol was found guilty of fraud when he admitted logging into the account of his former employer, Stockwood Garage, and falsely issuing 25 MOT certificates.
He admitted that none of the vehicles had ever been to the garage printed on the certificate and therefore had not had the brakes, emissions or underside checked, which are mandatory in an MOT test.
Andy Rice, DVSA Head of Counter Fraud and Investigations said:
“DVSA’s priority is to protect everyone from unsafe drivers and vehicles.
“MOT fraud is a serious issue, it puts potentially dangerous vehicles on the road. This is why we’re now using artificial intelligence and expert analysis to interrogate MOT records and pick out potentially fraudulent or incompetent tests.
“When we find such activity, we’ll consider banning and prosecuting offenders, and will push for the strongest punishments.”
For the first and second offences a total of 52 weeks in prison was handed down, suspended for 24 months. For remaining offences there was a custodial sentence of 26 weeks suspended for 24 months to run concurrently. He was also made the subject of a 12- month community order with 150 hours of unpaid work. The judge ordered him to pay a contribution towards prosecution costs of £1200 together with a victim surcharge of £140.
He also was banned from being an MOT tester by DVSA.
The deception came to light after DVSA received intelligence about the issue and launched an investigation.
Court-Chandler told DVSA that he only charged the going rate for an MOT and stopped when he had repaid a debt.
DVSA offers a range of free and easy digital services for motorists. These include: