Fraudulent driving instructors and examiners
Learning to drive on today's busy roads is stressful enough without having to worry if your instructor is duping you into paying him more of your hard earned cash.
It would appear there are con men and women in every profession which unfortunately includes driving instructors and examiners.
Over the 22 months we have highlighted a number of rogue professionals and their attempts to con learner drivers.
Read more about each case.
Friday, Nov 16 2012
Cheating driving instructor, 48, tricked his pupils into paying £100 for fake driving tests
Mark Netherway, 48, tricked at least six learners by pretending they were sitting their real tests - charging them £62 time plus £38 for his car.
But each one was certain to fail because it was all a fraud to pocket their test fees.
Netherway even gave the disappointed learners official-looking green documents showing what they had done wrong - and why they had to keep their L-plates.
A court heard the 'examiner' was a fellow driving instructor who was also tricked into putting them through mock driving tests.
Instructor Mark Adams was paid £18 a time by Netherway to conduct mock tests to get learners ready for the real thing.
Netherway's L-plate scam was uncovered when one pupil became suspicious.
He returned to the test centre in Fairwater, Cardiff, where he was met before his bogus test.
The learner discovered he had never taken a genuine test - and blew the whistle on Netherway.
Cardiff Crown Court heard police interviewed Netherway and he first claimed the learners knew it was just a mock test.
Netherway was sentenced to eight months suspended jail, 200 hours of unpaid community work and repay the learners he cheated within the next 28 days.
Monday 14th March, 2011
DRIVING instructor and an examiner have been convicted of accepting bribes to pass students.
Salima Rashid, 49, of St George's Avenue, Grays, took money from pupils she taught, of up to £1,000 a time, from January 1, 2007, until last June saying she would get them passed at the Barking Test Centre.
The grandmother of eight would then split the cash between two different examiners at the centre, including 38-year-old Nick Madigan, of Kitkatts Road, Canvey.
During a trial at Snaresbrook Crown Court, Rashid denied she had ever taken bungs from students or had any knowledge about the scam, blaming the examiners and her "corrupt" pupils.
But jurors found her guilty of conspiracy to commit bribery and Rashid was sentenced to two years imprisonment.
One former student, Nadia Ali, said she had handed over an envelope, stuffed with £1,000 cash, to her instructor on the day of her test.
She went on to pass, despite having a near miss with an oncoming car during her exam.
Madigan pleaded guilty to conspiracy to commit bribery and is due to be sentenced next month.
One learner, Gurpal Bhogal, had told the court during the trial he had been failed by Madigan in January 2008, but just minutes later was offered a pass by the examiner in return for a sum of cash.
Judge Simon Wilkinson said Rashid had committed an offence which was "serious on many levels".
Judge Wilkinson added: "As an officially approved driving instructor, the public expected you to maintain the highest standards in relation to that position. Instead you betrayed them."
Another examiner, Kulwinder Mann, 47, from Chadwell Heath, had passed students after taking backhanders without even taking them out onto the road.
Mann was judged unfit to plea as he suffers from mental health problems, but was found guilty of doing an act relating to conspiracy to commit bribery, obtaining a pecuniary advantage and money laundering. He will be sentenced on April 8.
Wednesday 19th January, 2011
A DRIVING instructor who taught 13 students without the correct qualifications carried out a "victimless crime", a court heard.
A woman took thousands of pounds from learner drivers while pretending to be a fully-fledged instructor.
Having failed her driving instructor examinations, Lisa Branston, 40, of Link Road, Canvey, set up her own Canvey-based driving school, but did not have a licence to teach people how to drive.
The mum-of-two had earned £8,000, after working more than a year for driving school, Red, without passing the third and final stage of her instructor's exams.
The court heard Branston had completed the first two stages of her instructor's exams - theory and driving ability. This meant she could teach for six months while she tried to pass the third stage - driving instruction.
One of the duped pupils stated, he never doubted Branston was the real thing, although he did find it odd when she was unable to give him a phone number.
Lisa Branston was given a six-month community supervision order at Basildon Crown Court after pleading guilty to four counts of fraud.
What greedy and deceitful people.
What are your thoughts and do you have any similar stories that DSA Fraud department @ firstname.lastname@example.org would be interested in. All information you provide to the DSA will be treated in the strictest confidence.
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Keywords: learning to drive, driving instructors, learner drivers, mock tests, driving lessons, Basildon,
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