SABA– Chief of Saba Police Herman Oosterveen has informed the public of a new process that eases the processing of traffic violation fines in Saba.
The protocol has been in effect since Monday, September 17, and allows the police patrolling the island to issue traffic fines by issuing them on the spot with an official traffic report with copies for the police records, for the Prosecutor’s Office in Saba and for the person being fined. Before, police had to type the report back at the office and submit it to the Prosecutor’s Office, a cumbersome bureaucratic process that is eased by this new form. The new form advises the civilian of the date and time when he/ she is summoned for the court hearing and when he may contest the fine.
The document outlines the specific traffic violation and the name of the official reporting the fine. It also leaves space for the suspect to give a statement after being informed of the right to remain silent. In order to prevent prosecution, the person receiving the fine can contact the public prosecutor’s office at the latest eight days before the court date to hear the conditions.
If choosing not to contest the fine, payment of the fine can be made at latest on the Friday before the court date. “The first instance court hearing date is set-up to allow plenty of time for the civilian to make the payment,” Chief Oosterveen said.
Payments are to be made at the Tax Office and proof of payment is to be submitted to the Prosecutor’s Office for the fine case to be closed. In order to maximise transparency, each fine category is spelled out in detail on the form ranging from US $30 for minor vehicle issues to US $280 for vehicles found not to be insured. Failure to present the possession of a valid driver’s licence or for ignoring an indication to stop by a police officer is US $115.
In cases where the civilian has a valid driver’s licence but is not able to present it at the time of the issuing of the fine, the civilian can take the licence to the Prosecutor’s Office leading to an adjustment of the fine to a lower amount.
Source: The Daily herald, September 21, 2012