Driver escapes motoring penalty

A driver has claimed a victory for common sense when he escaped further penalties after paying a motoring offence fine with a cheque written on toilet paper.

Richard Roper, 63, of Long Melford, Suffolk, was ordered to spend slightly over an hour at the back of Sudbury Magistrates' Court instead.

Mr Roper staged his "peaceful protest" after he was handed a £30 fine for parking his car illegally across two spaces in Sudbury.

But Suffolk Police took Roper to court in an effort to reclaim the £15 fee they said they would have to pay to process the unusual payment method.

District Judge David Cooper suggested the compromise punishment as a way of "clearing it all off".

Afterwards, Mr Roper, a retired managing director of a pharmaceuticals company, said: "I don't consider it a punishment. It was a victory for common sense, really.

"At the end of the day, it wasn't me refusing to pay the fine. It was them refusing to accept it.

"In this day and age, one should be entitled to make a peaceful protest when you think what's happened to you is unjustified. When people have discretionary powers, they should use them."

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