Council loses appeal in 40p parking ticket case

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The Independent Online

A council that dragged a mother of two through the courts over an unpaid 40p parking ticket was accused of "wasting" thousands of pounds of taxpayers' money after it lost the case.

Laura Trotman, 25, from Stroud, Gloucestershire, fought an 11-month battle with her local council over a £100 parking fine - which she had refused to pay.

She had been given an absolute discharge by magistrates in November and was told she would not have to pay after the court accepted the ticket machine had been out of order when she parked her car.

But the council decided to launch a costly challenge against the sentence - which was rejected yesterday at the same court.

The council was thought to be considering taking its fight to the High Court - but revealed it had finally ended its prosecution.

Mrs Trotman's husband, Paul, said the case should never have gone to court and branded the council as "ridiculous" for pursuing the matter for so long. "It's absolutely ridiculous that taxpayers have to foot the bill for this," he said.

"I think that the magistrates couldn't believe we were back in court again," Mr Trotman added. "I just think that the council felt that they couldn't lose face and had to appear to be tough. All they care about is their image."