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Bank accounts frozen as fines' dodgers forced to stump up at Tain court

By Hector MacKenzie

Tain Sheriff Court
Tain Sheriff Court

More than £1000 has been recovered from fines' dodgers at Tain Justice of the Peace Court.

The persistent dodgers, amongst them one from Evanton,found that their bank accounts had been frozen by fines enforcement officers.

Freezing bank accounts or arresting wages are among the measures available to the

Scottish Courts and Tribunals Service (SCTS) for recovering unpaid fines.

Other enforcement measures include clamping vehicles, taking money directly from benefits

and even arresting non-payers travelling through ports and airports.

A new report released by SCTS today reveals that the fines collection rate remains

consistently strong. It shows that 89 per cent of the value of Sheriff Court fines imposed during

the three-year period between 2015/16 and 2017/18 has either been paid or is on track

to be paid.

The six non-payers from Inverness, Forres, Evanton, Ardgay, Mull and Midlothian settled their outstanding fines amounting to £1205 in full after getting a nasty shock when their funds were arrested.

The fines were imposed for a variety of offences including road offences and threatening and offensive behaviour.

SCTS chief operations officer David Fraser said: “The fines enforcement teams continue to be highly effective in securing unpaid fines – ignoring your fine and not speaking to an enforcement officer if you are having difficulty paying is very unwise.

"Failure to pay, or to engage with our officers, will result in strong sanctions being taken including arrestment of wages, bank accounts, your car being clamped or inconvenience and embarrassment by being arrested when travelling abroad.”

In all cases, offenders have opportunities to make payment of their fines at a reasonable

and affordable instalment rate.

All defaulters are issued warnings before action is taken.

Those in genuine financial difficulty can engage with enforcement officers to discuss

payment terms.

Most fines can be paid round the clock on our secure website at www.scotcourts.gov.uk/payyourfine or using our automated telephone payment system by phoning 0300 790 0003.

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