§ Mr. Arthur Lewis
asked the Minister of Transport whether he is aware that last year the Greater London Council received in respect of prosecutions for unlicensed road vehicles a net total of £590,000, an average of £10 per offender; and, in view of the dissatisfaction of the Greater London Council with the present system if he will seek powers to introduce a more effective method of enforcement of the law for this offence.
Mr. Bob Brown
I understand from the Greater London Council that, in 1969, it brought 21,230 successful prosecutions for unlicensed use of motor vehicles resulting in fines and costs amounting to £237,795 and orders for back duty amounting to £164,478. The average fine, which is entirely a matter for the courts, amounted to about £11. In addition £188,000 was paid in respect of 28,84684W mitigated penalties offered by the council in lieu of prosecution.
More effective enforcement will, as my hon. Friend knows, be possible under the centralised licensing system, with "continuous liability" for excise duty, to be introduced under the powers already given by the Vehicle and Driving Licences Act, 1969.