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77-year-old pensioner fined £187 for using phone he 'didn't have' while driving

Rhiannon Ingle

Published 
| Last updated 

77-year-old pensioner fined £187 for using phone he 'didn't have' while driving

Featured Image Credit: Nine News

It's fair to say that absolutely no one likes being landed with a hefty fine - especially when you're not even guilty of what you're being accused of.

Well, that was exactly the case for one 77-year-old pensioner who was fined a hefty £187 for using a phone he claims he 'didn't have' while driving.

Frank Singh was handed the penalty after being caught on a mobile phone detection camera on the Pacific Motorway in NSW's Northern Rivers region last September but he has since come forward totally adamant he's never even owned a mobile phone.

Frank Singh was fined nearly £200. Credit: Nine
Frank Singh was fined nearly £200. Credit: Nine
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"It looks like I'm guilty on it, but I'm not. I don't own one. I don't use one," Frank told A Current Affair.

The OAP, who says he doesn't own a computer or have an email address let alone mobile phone, says the item the camera caught him holding on the motorway was not a device but in fact just his wallet.

He admitted that while he can't specifically remember what he was doing at the time, he reckons he was possibly placing his wallet on the passenger seat after paying for petrol.

Frank decided to appeal the fine and take Revenue NSW to court, even with the risk of paying thousands in legal fees if he ended up losing the case

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His pal Kishori Breeze helped him out as - ironically - the pensioner needed a mobile number and email to file an appeal.

The pensioner claimed he's never even owned a phone. Credit: Nine
The pensioner claimed he's never even owned a phone. Credit: Nine

"I thought it would be quite an easy process to get it dropped," Kishori said. "You've got a fine for using a mobile phone while driving. You don't have a mobile phone.

"Let's just nip down to the office and get this fixed."

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However, the pair were shocked when the review was rejected, with Kishori recalling: "He received a letter to say, yeah, we understand that you say that you don't have a phone, but please go ahead and pay the fine anyway.

"When Frank tried to say, 'I don't have a mobile phone and I've never'... (the Magistrate) butt in and she said, 'You do own a mobile phone'."

According to A Current Affair, the Byron Bay Magistrate warned Frank that if he was found guilty, he'd have a whole lot more on his hands than the original fine as he'd have to fork out an extra £1,000 or so in legal costs to Revenue New South Wales.

However, in an interesting turn of events, Revenue NSW made the decision to revoke the fine.

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Revenue NSW has since made the decision to revoke the fine. Credit: Nine
Revenue NSW has since made the decision to revoke the fine. Credit: Nine

Frank later received a letter saying he would not be required in court following an investigation.

It read: "We have decided to cancel the fine."

"You little bloody beauty, how good's that!" Frank beamed after hearing the news, with plans to celebrate the victory with a beer down at the pub.

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Revenue NSW issued a statement on the matter to A Current Affair.

It read: "Revenue NSW cannot publicly comment on cases which are actively before the court.

"Revenue NSW will contact this customer to discuss their concerns.

"We encourage customers to speak with us if they believe a fine has been issued incorrectly or believe their review has been wrongly rejected.

"If you believe a review has been rejected unfairly, please contact us on 1300 138 118 to discuss the situation."

Topics: News, Crime, Australia, Money

Rhiannon Ingle
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