New government proposals to raise the fine for illegally using mobile phones behind the wheel are both “impotent and futile”, the country’s leading traffic lawyer has said.
Instead, Nick Freeman, aka Mr Loophole, said because it was the new “drink driving”, motorists flouting the law must be banned from the roads.
And in addition to receiving the same treatment from the courts, it also had to carry the same social stigma.
Speaking on the BBC, the lawyer – known for representing a string of high-profile clients in motoring cases – said simply raising the fine to £200 would not make any difference.
Mr Freeman said: “Research has consistently shown that illegal use of a mobile phone can be just as dangerous as drink driving, therefore the punishment must be changed to reflect this.
“Only two years ago the fine was raised from £60 to £100, and this had no deterrent effect. All it did was raise extra revenue. Putting it up to £200 will be equally impotent and futile.
“It’s not often I side with the police, but Gloucester’s chief constable Suzette Davenport and I are singing from the same hymn sheet on this issue. It’s just the government that is out of tune!
“However, if it wants to improve road safety as it claims, it must introduce measures that produce real results, not just a few tabloid headlines.
“Illegal phone driving must be put on a parity with drink driving – and it must also be made as socially unacceptable!”
He added: “Drink driving carries a minimum 12-month disqualification for a first offence, and my view is that there should be no difference for the illegal use of a mobile phone.
“A potential lengthy period of disqualification would eradicate this serious problem overnight.
“These more stringent measures would provide the ultimate deterrent and would reduce the number of road accidents, casualties and fatalities as a result.”
About Freeman & Co.
Freeman & Co. are a specialist firm of road traffic and criminal defence solicitors based in Manchester but with nationwide coverage.
Freeman & Co. specialise in a wide variety of road traffic cases, ranging from drink driving, speeding and mobile phone offences, to name but a few.
The firm was created by Nick Freeman, who has been dubbed “Mr Loophole” by the press for his technical legal ability and robustly challenging the prosecution.
Nick is well regarded as an expert road traffic lawyer and has successfully represented many high profile clients for a variety of motoring offences as well as criminal offences.
The firm of Freeman & Co. embodies the way Nick works, with minute attention to detail and challenging the prosecution at every turn.
If you are facing a road traffic matter or criminal offence and need the services of Freeman & Co. please call on 0161 236 7007.
Freeman & Co. are available for Police Station attendances and an experienced criminal lawyer is on hand to take your call.
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Freeman & Co Solicitors
8 Oxford Court
Tel. 0161 236 7007