People who use disabled parking badges illegally have been warned the law will catch up with them after a man was caught red-handed and made to pay more than £700.
John Swales, of Heatons Bank, Rawmarsh, used his mother’s blue badge to park in a designated disabled bay on Wellgate in Rotherham town centre in August last year.
In a statement, Rotherham Council said he parked the car alone, went into a nearby bank, and then returned to the car on his own.
This was all observed by a senior civil enforcement officer from the council.
Swales said the badge holder was in town but she had already been contacted at home during the time the vehicle had been parked.
He refused to attend an interview under caution regarding the matter so the council pushed ahead with charging him.
Swales failed to appear in court and was found guilty in his absence.
Magistrates’ fined him £440 with £300 costs and also imposed a £44 victim surcharge.
After the case, councillor Denise Lelliott, the authority’s cabinet member for jobs and the local economy, said: “This is yet another example of this extremely anti-social crime.
“Using a blue badge fraudulently whilst the badge holder is not present is denying blue badge holders with genuine needs the opportunity to use a designated parking bay.
“Our officers are very alert to fraudulent use of blue badges and anyone using a blue badge in such a manner runs a high risk of being caught and prosecuted.
“The council will not tolerate such activities and will take legal action whenever it is in the public interest to do so.”