Driving test fraud man given suspended jail term
An Iranian man who paid Kurdish men to sit his theory and practical driving tests for him, has narrowly escaped being sent to prison.
Raouf Wali Mamaali admitted a charge of fraud during a theory driving test at Builth Wells on September 8, 2016 and fraud during a practical driving test at Llanishen between October 10, 2017 and January 11, 2018, when he appeared at Llandrindod Wells Magistrates’ Court on Wednesday.
The 32-year-old of City Road, Cardiff, said he had paid someone £200 to do the theory test for him in Builth Wells.
Prosecuting, Mr Justin Evans, said Miss Powell was working at the Builth Wells Test Centre in September 2016 when an individual attended with a provisional driving licence card as identity, in the name of Mamaali.
The individual did not match the photo on the licence and Miss Powell reported the matter.
In January 2019 a person attended at Llanishen Driving Test Centre with Mamaali’s provisional driving licence identity card and Elaine Williams was working there. Because of the earlier Builth Wells matter, two officers from the Driver and Vehicle Standards Agency were waiting and Miss Williams alerted them.
The officers interviewed Mamaali and he made full and frank admissions to the Builth matter and was more equivocal about the Llanishen matter.
Magistrates ordered an all-options pre-sentence report.
Probation Officer Rachel Lonsdale said Mamaali was approached several years ago by a group of Kurdish men who offered to take the driving tests for him. He had no idea about the law and his partner was with pregnant with their first child and so he agreed to do it. He had never considered driving in the United Kingdom before.
Ms Lonsdale said Mamaali got upset when he thought about the danger he could have posed if they had passed the driving test for him and he took to the road.
Mitigating, Christian Cormack said Mamaali had been exploited by an organised crime entity who took money off him to try and get a driving licence which he did not really need, he did not even have a car.
“Since 2018 he has waited to find out what would come of this matter and he has not offended since then.”
Mamaali was sentenced to 12 weeks in prison suspended for 12 months.
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