One of the witnesses produced, almost magically, at the UHW Cardiff case last week was a Kristina Kealy, apparently of ZZPS and working at may Court Links Business Centre, Old Woking road, Woking, Surrey, GU22 8BF.
On both the Claimant's and the Defendants' schedule, Ms (Oops, I should say Mrs) Kealy was listed as being called on Thursday, and as a result, at the start of the proceedings on Wednesday she wasn't present.
The defendants only found out that Kristina Kealy was a witness on 13 June 2017, and immediately scurried away to check her, and the other five witnesses Bona Fides. After all, readers of this blog will be fully aware of "Matt Murdoch/k" the blind superhero lawyer apparently working for MIL
Collections. However, as always, investigations were started on that basis that the witness is being honest.
What was discovered throws up more questions than answers. There are :-
* No publicly available Electoral Roll records for Mrs Kealy within 200 miles of Woking, or indeed within the United Kingdom.
* No publicly available Birth certificate for a person named Kristina Kealy within the last 65 years
* No publicly available Marriage Certificate in the UK between a Mr and Mrs Kealy, with the Bride's name being Kristina.
* No Linked-In information about Mrs Kealy at ZZPS, or indeed at any company in the UK
* No Facebook account in the name of Kristina Kealy in the UK
* No Credit Records for a Kristina Kealy in the UK
And for the record, both the spelling Kealy and Kealey were checked. The nearest Kristina Kealy found was a teacher in Kew York City.
Having got to the stage of ascertaining that, on the balance of probabilities, Mrs Kealy did not exist, work continued to investigate the company for whom she claims to work. Again, this investigation started on the basis that ZZPS Ltd are who they say they are, and background checks on the company were undertaken.
On 11 July, John Wilkie called ZZPS’s published phone number, and asked to speak to Kristina Kealy. He identified himself, and was told that there is no one working for ZZPS named Kealy. He asked as well, where at May Court he should deliver a legal document, such that it would be
served. He was told that he cannot serve a document at May Court and would have to deliver it to ZZPS’s registered office. This is in direct contradiction to a letter sent by ZZPS to Private Parking Appeals earlier this year, where they stated that correspondence needs to be sent to
their address in May Court.
However, prior to this call a visit had been paid to May Court. ZZPS is not listed as being based there; May Court apparently has two suites, and two businesses, Frobisher Capital and i-Corporate Risk Consultants. ZZPS is not located there, and indeed, with 16 staff as claimed by Mrs Kealy
in her cross-examination, there would not be enough space for the three companies in the two suites available at that site.
Contact was made with both Frobisher and I-Corporate. Neither firm has any association with ZZPS – no shared directors, they don’t handle mail. ZZPS appears, on the balance of probabilities, not to be based at May Court.
Another point as well – May Court is in Woking, which has an 01483 dialling area. Yet ZZPS has an 01932 telephone number – that’s for Weybridge, some 8 miles away. Long lines are not impossible, but have not been sold by BT since February 2008. With ZZPS only being formed in 2011
as Gary Osner’s Parachute for Roxburghe, and only starting trading in 2015, it is not feasible that this is what has occurred here.
Roxburghe, of course, was closed down when it lost its FCA consumer Credit Licence – one has to ask why ZZPS only pursues unregulated consumer debt, on the very edge of legality, though that is a question for another day and another place.
So, it appears that both Kristina Kealy and ZZPS have lied to the court about some material particulars - the identity of a witness goes to their basic credibility.
There is worse. It has been widely reported that counsel in the hearing stated, and here I will quote Barry Beavis that "on the lunch break on day one JW and ZZPS witness, Kristina Kealy, were alone in the court room. JW is alleged to have said something about driving to their offices and
slashing all their tyres."
Now this is an interesting allegation. Its interesting for several reasons, the first being that John Wilkie is a well known and almost universally respected advocate. His company, Private Parking Appeals, is itself a BPA member, and Mr Wilkie also has good relationships with people like Mark Anfield and David Greenbank of Parking Eye, Mike Perkins of Combined Parking Solutions, James De Savery of Napier Parking, Derek Millard-Smith of JMW Solicitors, Paul Bohill of DCBL and of course Steve Clark and Andrew Pester of the BPA itself.
Additionally Mr Wilkie has now done a few parking cases - over 36 in total, and no-one has ever suggested that his conduct has been anything other than exemplary, indeed he has been allowed leave on more than one occasion to represent at appeal level and is regularly complimented about
the standard of his submissions and behaviour as a lay person. One District Judge remarked that he conducted himself “no less than I would have expected from Senior counsel”. Additionally, Counsel for Indigo made no objection to John Wilkie continuing to represent after judgment, nor, at the appeal did he object to Mr Wilkie making submissions; he indicated that even if the matter went to multi-track, he would not object to the Defendants being assisted by Mr Wilkie.
Now we come to the most interesting part of this reported allegation. The court heard from its first witness, John Hawkey of Indigo, up to about 12:20 on the Wednesday, and he was the only witness present. The next witness, Christopher Singleton, also of Indigo, was expected at around
1pm, but was not available to call at that stage. The District Judge asked the Claimant to see if any other witnesses could be made available after lunch. Kristina Kealy, at this point, was not present. The judge then adjourned for lunch, and asked the parties to return for 1:30.
When the court resumed at 1:30, Christopher Singleton had arrived and Peter Cockburn from the Hospital has also been produced. However, surprisingly, Kristina Kealy had arrived as well.
Woking is 2 hours 30 minutes by car from Cardiff. It’s over 3 hours by train. Even a Private Flight from the nearest airport to Cardiff would take longer than an hour, when you take into account leaving for Chobham or Farnborough Airport, the flight itself, and arriving at Cardiff
Airport, yet Kealy was here, fresh, composed, unstressed…
So one has to ask two questions - if she had come from Woking, as claimed, how had she managed to travel "faster than a speeding bullet" and make the 136 mile journey in less than 60 minutes. That's an average speed of double the motorway speed limit. And yes, it is known that she drove, as
she told Sue Prior of the TEPAG group that she managed to get a bus lane ticket (karma is a bitch).
And, if she was apparently verbally assaulted by John Wilkie at that point, as claimed, why was Mr Wilkie not removed from the proceedings there and then, why was he allowed to cross examine this apparently by now scared and vulnerable witness?
The answer, of course is simple. Kristina Kealy was never threatened by John Wilkie as claimed, and did not come from Woking, but was produced conveniently in Cardiff. Indeed, David Jones of United Wales Media was also unable to contact Mrs Kealy via ZZPS either - how curious.
Indigo were betting the far on this claim, and it was worth their while to risk producing a witness who they know is untraceable, as the Defendants had no way of contesting this. When they tried the Judge shut them down, and then a scurrilous and entirely false allegation was made as a personal attack against John Wilkie.
Who behaved unreasonably here, I wonder?
The attempted smearing of John Wilkie appears to be a calculated and premeditated attempt to 'justify' the Wright Hassall legal fees of around £50k. Wright Hassall started the maneuvering by trying to move the claim from the small claims court, where there are no legal fees, to the multi-track, where there are. This appears to be the next strategy -attacking the lay representative of the defence to attempt to get fees granted under 27.14(2)g 'unreasonableness' rule.
The Prankster does not have a transcript of the judgment so does not know how much of the costs awarded are due to the alleged behaviour of John Wilkie, and how much are due to other matters.
So far no independent evidence has emerged to support the claims of this apparent non-person, who does not appear to work at the contact address given on her witness statement.
It is interesting that while counsel for Indigo was allowed to introduce unsubstantiated allegations against Mr Wilkie, Mr Wilkie himself was allowed no right of reply, and was given the choice of either shutting up, or leaving the courtroom. Mr Wilkie chose to leave.
This is not the only controversial event in a large parking case. Who can forget the hearing of ParkingEye v Beavis, when their counsel was not available. A mysterious hoax phone call caused the first hearing to be cancelled, and in the next hearing their counsel was free to attend.
The Parking Prankster