Dear Lancashire County Council,

TRADING STANDARDS FOI
Illegal car clocking/ vehicle mileage adjustment is in the news at the moment as such could you answer the following questions.

1) How many cases of car clocking has your council investigated in the last 5 years?

2) Of those cases, how many were dealt with by prosecuting the suspected offenders?

3) How many of those prosecutions were successful?

4) In total, how many vehicles were involved in the successfully prosecuted cases?

5) What is your council’s policy for alerting innocent members of the public and motor trade
to vehicles the council has successfully proven have been "clocked"?

6) Can you provide confirmation in respect of question 5 of the type of action you have taken to warn people about the vehicles you have discovered to have been clocked?
For example, publishing ‎vehicle details, alerting Auto Trader or other specialist publications; registering data with HPI and other mileage data services.

7) Has the council or trading standards department seized any "clocked" vehicles ‎over the past five years and subsequently destroyed them?

Yours faithfully,

Mr.M.Robson

Freedom of Information, Lancashire County Council

 

 

 

Dear Mr Robson,

 

Request for information

 

I am writing to acknowledge receipt of your email dated 11/09/17, in which
you request the disclosure of information.

 

I can confirm that your enquiry will now be assigned to an officer who
will commence a search for the information you require and they will
respond in due course. The deadline date for issuing you with full
response is 09/10/17. We will endeavour to provide a response well in
advance of this date, however, should we envisage any delays, or require
more details from you, we will contact you immediately.

 

If you have any queries about the above, please do not hesitate to contact
us, quoting ref. 936.1319

 

Yours sincerely

 

Information Governance Team

Legal and Democratic Service

Lancashire County Council

PO Box 78

County Hall

PR1 8XJ

[1][email address]

[2]www.lancashire.gov.uk

 

Freedom of Information, Lancashire County Council

Dear Mr Robson,

 

Request for information under the Freedom of Information Act 2000

 

Further to your request for information, made under the provisions of the
above Act, please see below our response.

 

Request & Response:

 

1) How many cases of car clocking has your council investigated in the
last 5 years?    

35 complaints have been received which relate to allegations of car
clocking.  Not all of these merit a full formal investigation for various
reasons.  When an investigation is initiated this will usually  lead to
multiple instances of individual vehicle histories being checked.    

 

4 investigations have been undertaken in the period referred to.

 

2) Of those cases, how many were dealt with by prosecuting the suspected
offenders?

4 individuals were prosecuted in 3 separate cases; a further case is
ongoing.  

 

3) How many of those prosecutions were successful?

All 4 individuals were successfully prosecuted.  A further prosecution is
currently in process.

 

During the relevant period the Trading Standards Service also prosecuted a
company and a director reducing hours on agricultural vehicles, and a
company and two directors specialising in the manufacture of horse boxes
for misrepresenting mileage travelled by the chassis being used in the
conversion.

 

4) In total, how many vehicles were involved in the successfully
prosecuted cases?

70

 

5) What is your council’s policy for alerting innocent members of the
public and motor trade to vehicles the council has successfully proven
have been "clocked"?

We do not have a policy- decisions are made on a case by case basis,
depending on a number of factors, including:

·         the difference in value the clocking has caused for each
affected vehicle,

·         the time that has elapsed since the offence,

·         the age of the vehicle,

·         vehicle safety considerations,

·         the availability of current keeper information,

·         current vehicle whereabouts.

 

6) Can you provide confirmation in respect of question 5 of the type of
action you have taken to warn people about the vehicles you have
discovered to have been clocked?

For example, publishing ‎vehicle details, alerting Auto Trader or other
specialist publications; registering data with HPI and other mileage data
services.

On single-vehicle complaints, where we have good evidence that the mileage
is wrong, and where the vehicle is being advertised, but the clocking
happened before the trader obtained the car, we notify the trader and ask
them to remove or amend the advert as a matter of course, then check that
it has been done. If the trader does not sort this within the given time,
we contact the publication and advise them of the inaccuracy so they can
remove it. Where a case is being built, we notify all current keepers who
provide statements for the case. For cars over 3 years old the national
MOT database will show mileage discrepancies, so there is already a
suitable database publishing easily-accessible information- it would not
be practical for local authorities to start their own.

 

7) Has the council or trading standards department seized any "clocked"
vehicles ‎over the past five years and subsequently destroyed them?

No

 

We hope the above is informative.

 

Should you require anything further, please do not hesitate to contact the
Team quoting reference number 936.1319.PH.

 

Yours Sincerely,

On Behalf of the Information Governance Team

Legal & Democratic Services

Lancashire County Council,

[1]www.lancashire.gov.uk

[2][Lancashire County Council request email]

 

 

 

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