By James Bryce
A BRITISH expat has been left with a hefty bill after being forced to pay four years of outstanding fines on a car he sold in 2008.
Richard Oswald, from Coin, offloaded his Peugeot 206 in a €5,000 part-exchange deal, which included a fee to have the ownership of the vehicle transferred.
But the paperwork was inexplicably never completed and he and wife Leigh, who moved to Spain in 1993, have now had to shell out €1,000 in unpaid car tax and a speeding fine incurred by new owner Christine Birne.
“We found out during a visit to Coin Town Hall that the change of ownership had not been registered,” Oswald told the Olive Press.
“However the fines had been incurred and we were the mugs expected to foot the bill.
“We have been told that Birne insured it in 2009, but the insurance company did not check who the registered owner was.
“To our mind this is a form of identity theft, as someone is incurring debts and fines in the name of another person,” added the 60-year-old, originally from Essex.
The Oswalds insist they have tried on various occasions to trace Birne, who also lives in the Coin area, but have so far been unsuccessful.
“We have even spotted the car while out driving but have so far been unsuccessful. We hope she will get in touch with us, as it might be a genuine error on her part.”
Meanwhile Coin Town Hall insists they will not have to pay any more fines, despite the new owner still not having the car registered in her name.