Court & Public Inquiry Representation
If your business has been investigated by any enforcement agency then it is possible that criminal court proceedings could follow or you may be required to appear before a tribunal to consider the fitness of your business to hold its licence.
It is strongly advised that you seek court representation to achieve the best possible result and that you do so promptly.
In criminal proceedings, summonses or charges may be brought against a sole trader or partners in a business. Where a limited company is prosecuted, the directors may also be pursued as individuals too. In serious cases, very significant fines and other sanctions up to and including imprisonment can be imposed.
We can assist in proceedings in the Magistrates’ Court and the Crown Court by advising you about:
- the strength of evidence and defences
- whether pleas of guilty or not guilty should be entered
- court procedure
- likely prospects of acquittal or likely sentence if convicted
- costs and other orders such as confiscation (POCA).
In the road transport sector criminal proceedings are most frequently brought by DSVA, HSE, Environment Agency or police. However other authorities that may bring cases are Trading Standards, local government, DEFRA, HMRC and many more.
Further, we can advise and assist in relation to representation before any other tribunal or regulatory bodies outside criminal proceedings, where action may be taken for breaches of licences by the regulatory authority.
In the goods and passenger transport sector, this may relate to a Public Inquiry or Preliminary Hearing before the Traffic Commissioner or the requirement to appear before a local council taxi licencing committee, where the fitness to hold a licence will be considered and where the licence may potentially be taken away.
For advice and representation in relation to all road transport-related matters please contact Tim Ridyard and Tim Norris in our specialist team.