Following a three day stay in the hospital for ankle surgery, a Flintshire man arrived home only to find his BMW 323 gone from his parking space.
According to an ombudsman report, there was no evidence that the Flintshire council even tried to identify the owner of the car, which has been described as “utter ineptitude” by the man. Now, the council must pay him £2,750 ($3,600) for the car as well as for time taken to resolve the matter.
The owner of the car, referred to only as Mr G, reportedly paid £14,000 ($18,000) for his British racing green 3-Series in 2004, and has since spent £2,500 ($3,280) on a new engine and braking system, as reported by the BBC. While the report doesn’t specify the model year, we deduce that the car must have been an E46 model.
“I was utterly horrified and so confused because I couldn’t understand why they took away a vehicle that was registered to me at my address,” said the man, who also claims to have had about £2,000 ($2,600) worth of tools in the trunk of this car.
After reporting that his car is missing, officers went on to discover what had actually happened.
Apparently, a council officer claimed that a DVLA vehicle database search did not identify the vehicle’s registered keeper, even though a later report indicated that no such search ever took place. At the same time, no statutory notice was provided to the car’s owner, informing him about any intent of having the vehicle removed.
“This is as classic a case of maladministration as I have witnessed in four years of office,” stated public services ombudsman for Wales, Nick Bennett.
Thankfully, Mr G will at least receive some compensation for what he had to endure, as we can only imagine the frustration of having your car seized and destroyed out of the blue.