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Manchester lawyer Nick Freeman has hit out at the city council for charging exorbitant rates for businesses who own their own parking spaces.

Mr Freeman, one of the country’s most famous defence lawyers and known as Mr Loophole in the media, has been charged over £800 for the privilege of owning one parking space outside his Oxford Court offices.

The lawyer has joined forces with two other Oxford Court-based law firms, Draycott Browne and Mohindra solicitors, to question the council’s legality in charging these additional rates.

The move comes as the controversial plans to introduce congestion charges to Manchester’s streets came a step closer. If introduced, commuters coming into the city centre at peak times could be charged up to £5 a day.

Mr Freeman said: “I spoke to a member of the city council’s business rates services asking why we are having to pay these astronomical fees, and I’m still waiting for a call back.

“I think it’s disgraceful we are being hit with this additional tax. I pay rates on the building I own in Oxford Court and now I’m being asked to pay over £800 a year for a car parking space.

“It’s sheer greed on behalf of the council, and a number of us are now seeking expert advice to check its legality.

“Even though I’ve paid the bill I wrote saying it was made without prejudice and in no way accept the liability that is claimed.”

The Jewish Chronicle!