Colin Ogle, proprietor of Swindon Decodes, pleaded guilty to five charges under the Consumer Protection from Unfair Trading Regulations (CPRs) 2008. It’s the first time a provider of mileage correction services, rather than a seller of clocked vehicles, has been jailed in relation to such a crime.
This conviction explodes that myth, and suggests that the vast majority of these businesses have been built up on an illegal premise.
The sentence comes as a result of an OFT market study into second hand cars, which estimated the potential loss to consumers of illegal car clocking to be up to £580m per year. The OFT said its investigation had concluded that “in certain circumstances, the business practises of mileage correction service providers may breach the CPRs” and added that its market study “also stated that to avoid prosecution, mileage correction businesses would need to show that they had taken all reasonable precautions and exercised all due diligence to avoid the commission of an offence.”
So if you hear a mileage correction advocate describing the activity as totally legit, point out the Ogle case and see what they say. Nevertheless, there is still something of a legal grey area surrounding the legitimacy of these firms’ activities, which is why vehicle data provider HPI has been leading a campaign for clearer legislation and stronger measures to be taken in an effort to shut them down.
The company has launched a Government e-Petition, which it’s urging car enthusiasts to sign, in an effort to have the matter looked at more closely by lawmakers.
You can put your name to the e-Petition here – with a bit of luck, it’ll lead to more convictions for fraudsters like Ogle, and reduce the opportunities out there for people who want to make a quick buck out of honest motorists.