West Country road users are safer after an MOT tester was sentenced at Taunton Crown Court on 26 August 2022 to an eight month suspended custodial sentence for issuing 31 MOT certificates without carrying out the tests. He was also banned from MOT testing for 5 years by DVSA.
Anton Fricker of Taunton previously plead guilty to committing fraud by dishonestly making a false representation by issuing an MOT certificate without performing an MOT tests, intending to make a gain for himself or another. The guilty plea was entered at Taunton Magistrates’ Courts on 13th July 2022 and referred to Taunton Crown Court for sentencing.
Fricker committed the crimes between 26th August and 18th October 2021 in Taunton and Yeovil.
Fricker’s former employer alerted to DVSA to the issue. DVSA investigated, although Fricker refused to engage with the investigation. Having initially denied the offences, when presented with the evidence, Fricker admitted to the counts and to having received payment for the fraudulent MOTs.
Fricker was sentenced to an 8 month custodial sentence, suspended for 15 months. He was ordered to carry out 150 hrs of unpaid work and 25 rehabilitation days and ordered to pay a £500 contribution towards prosecution costs.
Marian Kitson, DVSA’s Director of Enforcement, said:
“DVSA’s priority is protecting you from unsafe drivers and vehicles.
“Britain has some of the safest roads in the world. One of the reasons for this is the high standard of MOT testing carried on over 30 million vehicles a year.
“Mr. Fricker issued MOT certificates to vehicles without having tested them. He was not only defrauding the MOT system, but he was also defrauding the public who rightly expect the MOT to help keep them and their families safe whilst using the roads.
“MOT Testers hold a position of trust and Fricker abused that trust. We will ensure that anyone who compromises safety in pursuit of personal gain feels the full force of the law.”
The owners of the 31 vehicles issued with fraudulent certificates have been contacted by DVSA.
The MOT test checks that your vehicle meets road safety and environmental standards.
Most MOTs are carried out by around 60,000 privately employed nominated MOT testers carrying out tests in around 23,000 testing stations around Great Britain.
Almost all the 30 million MOTs carried out annual are conducted to a high standard. However, DVSA monitors the industry closely and acts on poor and fraudulent practice. This is through both proactive work and in response to reports from the public and official bodies.
People can report a garage or tester if they believe MOT certificates are being given to vehicles which should have failed or have not been tested, or certificates are being issued for bribes or for failing vehicles unnecessarily to generate work.
The garage or tester could be banned from carrying out MOTs, fined or given a prison sentence, depending on how serious the offence is.
In 2021, there were a total of 127 cessation letters issued to Authorised Examiners running Vehicle Testing Stations, and 288 cessation letters issued to Testers for serious related shortcomings in the MOT testing scheme. This includes 85 Authorised Examiner cessation cases and 185 Tester cessation cases relating to Fraud, Dishonesty and Gross Negligence.
You can report suspected MOT fraud here – https://www.gov.uk/guidance/report-an-mot-tester
People making a report should include details of:
- who is involved
- vehicle registration if you have it
- what the MOT tester or centre has been doing
- where it happened
- when it happened
Motorists can appeal against an MOT test result at – https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/complain-about-an-mot