Police seize innocent driver’s car - then tweet picture

Nathan Phipps had his car seized, then watched as a traffic officer tweeted a picture. Pictures: Ross Parry Agency

Nathan Phipps had his car seized, then watched as a traffic officer tweeted a picture. Pictures: Ross Parry Agency

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A MOTORIST wrongly accused of driving without insurance has accused police of tweeting a picture of his seized car before he could prove his innocence.

Security guard Nathan Phipps, 34, was taking his newly-purchased Renault Clio for a test drive near Skipton when he was ordered to pull over.

Nathan Phipps had his car seized, then watched as a traffic officer tweeted a picture. Pictures: Ross Parry Agency

Nathan Phipps had his car seized, then watched as a traffic officer tweeted a picture. Pictures: Ross Parry Agency

He told his car was being seized and that he would be charged with driving without insurance, an offence that carries a £300 fine and six penalty points.

The traffic officer placed a sticker on the car, then took a picture of it and sent it to Twitter with the message, “Finished the day as started, another no insurance £seized”.

Mr Phipps took his insurance documents to a local police station the following day, and was told the charge would be dropped, but that he would still be liable for a £150 release fee.

He has now lodged an official complaint against the North Yorkshire officer who stopped him.

Mr Phipps, of Earby, near Keighley, said: “I’m absolutely disgusted. It was my girlfriend’s car and we had just bought it. I knew I was covered by my third party insurance and I was absolutely positive I had all the documents at home to prove it.

“I told the officer this when he stopped me but he wouldn’t listen.

“But what really annoyed me was when I saw what he was doing on his phone. When he started taking the picture of my car, I asked him what he was doing and he said he had a Twitter account and he and a few of the lads had a good laugh about it. I said I didn’t find it funny at all.”

North Yorkshire Police confirmed the complaint was being investigated.

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