Northern Ireland news

Goods of Lord Maginnis to be seized to cover train ticket fine from two years ago

Lord Maginnis was convicted of boarding a London train without a ticket on March 5 2014
Gareth McKeown

GOODS belonging to former Ulster Unionist MP Lord Ken Maginnis are to be seized and sold to cover a train ticket fine dating back two years, a court has heard.

The Co Tyrone peer was convicted of boarding a London train without a ticket in March 2014 and ordered to pay almost £1,500, consisting of a fine of £220 and costs of £1,239.

The case was initially before magistrates in London and went through a failed appeal at crown court before being transferred to Dungannon Magistrates Court when the money remained unpaid.

The 78-year-old refuses to pay the outstanding amount and claimed he had been denied justice.

Representing himself in court earlier today, the former Fermanagh and South Tyrone MP was told he could enter into a repayment plan to cover the outstanding fine and costs, but rejected the option.

The judge said the case was an "unhappy situation" and ordered that the recovery of goods to the value of the outstanding amount be seized from the peer.

In response Lord Maginnis asked: "Does this mean, in fact, justice is denied?"

The judge replied: "That's a philosophical issue and one I am not qualified to comment upon."

Lord Maginnis told the court he was summoned to London on two previous occasions for his case and turned up both times only for it be cancelled, the BBC reported.

The Dungannon man said that on the third occasion the case proceeded in his absence.

"I've been rubbished in terms of an 80p mistake, I resent that old age is treated [in such a way].

"This is not only personal - it's a general issue.

"It has already cost me £3,200 in legal fees to ascertain why the court went ahead in my absence."

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