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Specialist local speeding solicitors
UK Road Sense, Dorset Way / A3049 50 limit
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News, August, 2014
Speed cameras - incompetence, corruption and cover-up, extends to Martyn Underhill, PCC for Dorset
My full overview can be seen here: http://www.dorsetspeed.org.uk/2014/ Here you can explore to the full extent, about 10 years of investigation into Dorset Police and how they have used speed cameras to make money with total disregard to the stated aims of public safety, and continued to do so by ignoring complaint and corrupting other public bodies including the Information Commissioner and Information Tribunal. I realise the seriousness of what I am writing but state it with 110% confidence.
This case continues to grow and now I must provide a new top-level overview to try to cover it all in a few paragraphs.
In April 2011, I asked a question through FOI that hit the nail on the head with regard to the financial purposes of speed enforcement: “Could you please detail to me the COST OF PROVISION of the course (per person), and what makes this up?” What has happened since (full detail in link above) has been totally shocking, even to someone who already knew for sure how bad things were.
Although as I say this case is vast, a true flavour of it can be sensed by just considering a couple of points around how Martyn Underhill mismanaged the complaint when it became his turn to deal with it. The first 2 points relate exactly to the terms of the complaint:
1. When I met with Colin Smith, head of Professional Standards at Hampshire Police who MU asked to carry out the investigation, he agreed with me that the top level figures I was eventually given "didn't stack up". Colin Smith then concluded WITHOUT answering this concern that there was no financial misrepresentation!! Martyn Underhill accepted this clearly flawed decision keenly while turning a blind eye to the true facts which anyone can see do not allow the conclusion that was reached. (Strangely, I learned that as soon as the report was released, Colin Smith "no longer works for the department").
2. When I met with Martyn Underhill to discuss the Hampshire report, I pointed out that the conclusion that there was no misrepresentation of camera safety benefit was also wrong. I had repeatedly referred to Dorset Road Safe claiming entire reductions as their own achievement when they would have largely occured without them, and also to the lies about the Speed on Green camera being installed as a casualty reduction effort. It also came out that the figures I had been given, that I was investigating, and had been declared vexatious so that Dorset Police did not have to answer, (abuse of FOI obligations), were incorrect!!!!
3. Martyn Underhill reluctantly agreed to reconsider the 2 main points based on the above. He also said that I could have a recording of the meeting. But any change of decision would clearly be highly embarrassing as he had already foolishly reached and announced his one-sided conclusion without even allowing me to see the Hampshire report. However a month has passed and MU has refused to provide any of this or even comment if he will or not. I have had to conclude that his head is firmly and deeply in the sand
and that he knows for sure that a proper evaluation of the facts will prove Hampshire and him wrong. These are the actions of someone with things to hide. Mr Underhill would prefer to try to save face than to sort out incompetence and corruption in his force and ultimately save live.
4. The remainder of the meeting was rather a waste of time, with MU simply reading out the report which did detail a large number of irrelevant issues and obstructing questioning of it. Shockingly, my observation that Dorset Police had played a primary part in a £1 million fraud by justifying the Speed on Green camera with a pack of lies and by making the money, was not met with any denial or explanation but only by a suggestion that is was nothing to do with Dorset Police, only Poole Council!! No wonder MU doesn't want that recording released.
Martyn Underhill, the Police and Crime Commissioner for Dorset, has demonstrated that he is acting for the Police, not the public, in direct conflict with the primary purpose stated on the Home Office website: "As a PCC, you will have a responsibility to hold the police to account on behalf of the public. You will also have to hold the chief constable to account for the performance of your force area’s officers and staff." Martyn Underhill has tried, but failed, to protect his force,
and the Chief Constable at the time who was ultimately responsible, Martin Baker, from dishonest, fraudulent, dangerous behaviour by trying to deflect complaint by hiding behind a rigid interpretation of 2 complaint terms vastly narrowed from all of the obvious, serious and still unanswered issues.
The bottom line is that Policing is being corrupted, and road safety is suffering which means people are suffering, as a result of the greed that has resulted from the £millions being made from speed enforcement. There is nothing to suggest that things are any better today, with not one of the 3 people I met, MU, James Vaughan (Deputy Chief) and Nicky Searle (Chief Superintendent in charge of operations including traffic) with any fundamental knowledge of road safety but keenly protecting their chosen activities while refusing to engage in the concerns in complete conflict with fundamental safety principles.
I received a letter from James Vaughan, informing me that the recording device had "failed to record"!!! The remainder of his letter was pitiful and totally consistent with the above.
JV letter and response
I have also received an FOI response about the apparently incorrect (and therefore misleading) costs I was given, and the one cost that has been mentioned, was indeed wrong!
LP letter and response
I will now reveal that I took a recording of the meeting, which JV told me he was unable to provide (after nearly a month) due to a "technical problem". Clips and analysis available
Original response and appeal
Ian Belchamber and Martyn Underhill on Radio Solent
Follow up response and appeal