Luton Liberal Democrat councillor fined over £500 for Blue Badge fraud

A Luton Liberal democrat councillor has been prosecuted for Blue Badge fraud.

By Stewart Carr
Friday, 25th October 2019, 3:12 pm
Cllr Terry Keens
Cllr Terry Keens

Cllr Terry Keens, who represents Crawley ward, has been prosecuted by Luton Council and ordered to pay court costs of £552 after pleading guilty to one charge of misusing his mother’s Blue Badge in Luton town centre.

On 22 October at Luton Magistrates Court, Cllr Keens, of Havelock Road, pleaded guilty to charges under section 117 Road Traffic Regulation 1984 for falsely displaying a disabled persons Blue Badge.

The Court heard how he had parked in Luton town centre on 17 July 2019 in a bay that required payment, displaying a Blue Badge belonging to his mother, without making payment. His mother was not with him.

The matter was investigated by Luton Council officers, working in partnership with Shared Anti-Fraud Service (SAFS), who regularly investigate reported Blue Badge misuse.

During an interview with officers from the council and SAFS, Cllr Keens admitted that he parked his vehicle in the parking bay and displayed his mother’s blue badge. He expressed regret and made no attempt to excuse his behaviour, and was open and honest in his admission.

Cllr Keens pleaded guilty at the first opportunity. He received a £270 fine for the offence including a victim surcharge of £32 and was ordered to pay prosecution costs of £250.

A Luton Council spokesperson said: “We take the misuse of blue badge usage very seriously. It is extremely unfair to legitimate Blue Badge users who need access to disabled parking facilities.

“We are determined to do everything in our power to protect the quality of life for our disabled and vulnerable residents. This prosecution sends a strong message to anyone abusing the system.”

The Shared Anti-Fraud Service works in partnership with Luton Council to investigate and prosecute allegations of fraud against the many services delivered by the council.

Cllr Keens and the Luton Lib Dem party have been contacted by Luton News,

If you suspect someone is fraudulently using a Blue Badge report it to [email protected] or call 01582 547272.