Worrying Sevilla fine for Alicante resident

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Hands typing on vintage typewriter on wooden table.

January 29
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Dear Editor,

I got an official notice from Sevilla several months ago concerning a moving traffic violation plus a fine of about €200 with a picture of a vehicle very similar to the one we drive in Alicante, showing the rear licence plate which appeared to be, or match the real one on our car.

Except that at the time the picture was taken – it was conveniently dated and time stamped – neither I, the registered owner, or my wife, its only other driver had been in, nor anywhere near Sevilla for about two years.

The car had never been in that city. It seems to be relatively easy to get the name and address of a registered owner from the licencing authority, although I had thought only the police are authorised do that.

Is the town hall in Sevilla complicit in this sort of vehicle identity theft? It would be relatively easy for someone in Sevilla to ask a contact up here to look for a car similar to another in the city, take a picture of the vehicle and rear plate and get one or two fake plates made. Then stick those on the Sevilla-based car. Free beer! Drive as fast and park as you want. If that’s the scheme, I’m almost surprised we didn’t get more traffic or parking violation notices.

Our insurance agent handled the paperwork, sent a complaint on our behalf to the town hall in Sevilla, and the fine was dropped.

Luckily the notice from Sevilla arrived in our mail box merely one day before the first deadline to pay the fine. And we had just a few hours to pick up the actual notice the next day and get back to the Sevilla town hall with proof that our car had been here at the time the offence supposedly took place.

Had we missed that, the fine would have doubled and then we might have had to appear in a court in Sevilla to fight the charge!

How many caught in this deception would do that? Cheaper perhaps to pay the fine and hope the extortion won’t be repeated. Who in Sevilla would be the beneficiary of a payment? An insider in the town hall?

We could prove the car (our only operating vehicle) and ourselves were here the morning of the day of the alleged offence – with a sales receipt from a local store showing the date and time of purchase. Not anywhere enough time to get ourselves or our car to Sevilla and break the traffic law down there.

Be aware!

Name and address supplied

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