The UK’s transport department has released data related to convictions for imposters taking driving tests for learner drivers. The figures for the five-year period to the end of 2016 show an upward trend in the number of convictions.
In 2012, a total 57 drivers were either convicted of using a stand-in driver or acting as one. Broken down into the two groups, almost 80 per cent of the prosecutions were for using a stand-in. The number of successful convictions has increased year-on-year since.
In 2016, there were 75 successful prosecutions, but these were roughly equal for using a stand-in or acting as one. Department for Transport undersecretary Andrew Jones noted that out of the total 209 convictions over the five years, 53 per cent were handled by London’s Metropolitan Police.
The undersecretary explained that any suspected driving test cheating investigations are carried out by the Driver and Vehicle Standards Agency (DVSA). The DVSA only prosecutes when the evidence shows there is a reasonable chance of success in gaining a conviction.
Andy Rice is the chief of counter fraud and investigations at the DVSA. He told media sources the purpose of the driving test was to ensure drivers had the necessary proficiency and knowledge to navigate the UK’s roads in a safe manner and without posing a danger to other road users.
Mr Rice continued by saying fraudulently taking a driving test for someone who did not meet the UK’s expected driving standards was a criminal action. As a postscript, Mr Rice said the DVSA and police forces had effective checks in place and fraudsters would be detected.