A woman who misused a Blue Badge parking permit belonging to her dead mother has appeared in court. Baljit Sealey (49), of Gainsborough Drive, Northfleet, admitted the offence at Medway Magistrates’ Court on Monday.
On two occasions, in Gravesend and Ashford, Mrs Sealey had parked her vehicle in a disabled parking bay and displayed her deceased mother’s Blue Badge. Mrs Sealey’s mother, Kartar Dhillon, had died 18 months previously.
On checking the Blue Badge, Civil Enforcement Officers from Gravesham and Ashford Councils noted that the badge had been cancelled as the badge holder had died. The matter was reported to KCC which is the issuing and enforcement authority for Blue Badges in Kent.
Following enquires made by KCC’s Counter Fraud Team, Mrs Sealey was interviewed under caution. During the interview Mrs Sealey fully admitted her wrongdoing and was remorseful. She said: “I simply did not realise the seriousness of what I was doing.”
Mrs Sealey was sentenced to 40 hours community service and ordered to pay £1,000 costs and a £90 victim surcharge.
Clair Bell, KCC’s Cabinet Member for Adult Social Care and Health, said: “Our partnership working with district councils is highly effective in stopping Blue Badge abuse.
“Not only does this abuse cause a financial loss to district councils and therefore the taxpayer, but there is also significant reputational damage to the Blue Badge scheme – a scheme in place to help and support disabled people.”