Arrival Rail North Court Summons

Hi guys.

I received a court summons today for apparently avoiding paying 50p. I got on the train at Blackrod travelling to Manchester Victoria. There!!!8217;s no ticket office at Blackrod so I couldn!!!8217;t buy a ticket. When I got off the train at Manchester Victoria there was a guy sat on a bench issuing the tickets from a hand held machine. He said !!!8220;where from!!!8221;? and I said !!!8220;Blackrod, Bolton!!!8221;. I paid and he printed the ticket. Two seconds later two men got hold of me and pulled me to the side and said they were inspectors. He asked why I had purchased a ticket from Bolton and not from Blackrod and I told him that I told the ticket vendor I had said Blackrod, Bolton and I was issued the incorrect ticket; I offered the 50p difference but he said that it was not possible. He asked why I mentioned a Bolton and I replied that because Blackrod is in Bolton. He then asked for ID which I didn!!!8217;t have on my person and then asked for my address details which I gave. He accused me of lying about the details I had provided, I said they are my genuine details and he said he would go and check. When he returned after a few minutes he said they were false details because they weren!!!8217;t on the electoral register. The details were correct and I am on the electoral register and have been at this address for years. (So I don!!!8217;t know why all this nonsense about me giving false details, I was truthful all along). After all this he wrote a statement which I signed for him and then I left the station.

I was truthful all along and cooperated fully giving all correct details and complying fully with their requests despite their seemingly hostile attitude (one guy in particular). At one point I called a police woman over to help me because I felt I was being bullied somewhat and she was ambivalent towards the situation and another rail worker who was looking on who I spoke to was sympathetic towards me and agreed with me that they had made the error.

They issued me the wrong ticket so it!!!8217;s their fault. If I was being cynical I could have accused them fine harvesting but that would be difficult to prove. Also if I was trying to avoid payment I could have claimed to have travelled from Salford Central which would have been a cheaper ticket.

They sent a fixed penalty demand which I ignored after reading a similar situation in the Bolton Evening News faced by a traveller in 2015. You will have to google it I can!!!8217;t post links yet ( Bolton Eviening news business man train ticket fine )

He appealed the fixed penalty notice twice but they wouldn!!!8217;t budge so I didn!!!8217;t want to waste my time. I decided that I would let it go to court and plead not guilty because I am innocent and if I lost I would pay the costs because I hate bullies which is what Aviva are acting like and I will not be bullied by anyone.

What worries me about standing up to these bullies in court and proclaiming my innocents is that if I lose I will have a criminal record for the very first time which I do not want. I am travelling to USA with my family soon and it may jeopardise that and any other future travel plans.

I can settle for £100 and avoid all this but why should I? I!!!8217;ve done nothing wrong.

What is my best course of action?


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