6/2/2007UK Police Seize Car, Strand Innocent Man
Police reliance on erroneous insurance database information seize the car of an innocent man, stranding him over weekend holiday.
Police in Lancashire, UK stranded an innocent man last weekend because the UK's Motor Insurance Database mistakenly labeled his vehicle as uninsured. Police pulled over Lee Robson, 32, while he was driving on the M65 on May 24. They immediately seized his Ford Escort, refusing to believe Robson's assurances that he was, in fact, insured. Police held Robson's car over the Spring bank holiday weekend ending May 28. Robson was fined and billed £225 (US $450) for towing and storage. Five demerit points were put on his driver's license.
At the time, Robson had been fully covered by valid insurance from a company called easy-Money, underwritten by Zurich insurance. The company claimed responsibility for entering Robson's information into the database improperly and promised to pay all of Robson's towing and storage expenses. Police canceled the demerit points on his license.
"But it still meant that I was without my car for a number of days," Robson told the Lancashire Telegraph newspaper. "I do not work and so I could not afford to pay the storage costs. The fact I am being penalized for keeping to the law is terrible."