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This question originated from a recent action taken by the Highway Patrol in Brazil to catch speeders who slow down only when close to static speed radars and then speed up again. They wanted to catch speeders by placing one extra portable speed radar close (a few kilometers apart) to the other.

Besides catching speeders on the second radar what eventually happened is that some speeders received 2 speeding tickets (1 from the static radar and 1 from the portable one) and that's the point of my question: if you are driving above the limit and keep that speed for a long distance, is that 1 violation of the law or 2? Getting 2 tickets for 1 law violation might be considered a double punishment? If the idea of getting 2 tickets is OK, at which point ended the first speeding and started the second?

I specifically mentioned Brazil in my question, but this question is wide enough to be applied in other countries. Those answers are welcome too.

  • Technically they can put four speeders stacked one above the other, so that they would give you four tickets instead of one… but if this was legal, it would be utterly idiotic. So yes, this is quite a good question. – o0'. Jun 1 '15 at 15:54
  • I pick a lock to break into a house. I carry the TV to me car. When I try to get back into the house for the DVD player I find that the door locked behind me so I pick it again and enter to get the DVD player. Two instances of B&E? This question has been asked with variations in the facts - driver crossed a country line, the name of the road changed, the speed limit changed, etc. – jqning Jun 1 '15 at 16:16
  • @JamesKeuning In England and Wales offences committed on the same occasion are looked at in the round; in your example there would be only one charge of burglary. – Flup Jun 1 '15 at 16:21
  • I think a lot of the times, in the presence of two tickets, regardless whether related or not, the prosecution might agree to wave one of the tickets if you agree to not dispute the other one. – cnst Aug 26 '15 at 21:45
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In the UK, s28(4) Road Traffic Offenders Act 1988 states that

Where a person is convicted (whether on the same occasion or not) of two or more offences committed on the same occasion and involving obligatory endorsement, the total number of penalty points to be attributed to them is the number or highest number that would be attributed on a conviction of one of them (so that if the convictions are on different occasions the number of penalty points to be attributed to the offences on the later occasion or occasions shall be restricted accordingly).

In other words, if you commit two or more offences 'on the same occasion', a court will only award penalty points attributable to the offence attracting the most points. 'On the same occasion' is interpreted by the court. I'm not aware of any case law on this point, so a court will be able to apply its discretion.

Note that this only applies to the penalty point aspect of the sentence: the convictions will all stand, and any fines awarded as a result are not subject to the same rule.

Of course the police may use their own discretion and charge a subset of the offences actually detected.

A short glossary

  • endorsement means that the offender's licence will be 'endorsed' with a number of penalty points.
  • penalty points are recorded on the driver's record at DVSA and expire after a number of years, depending on why they were awarded. A minor speeding offence will normally attract three points which last four years. Receiving twelve points within three years normally results in an automatic twelve-month ban; newly licensed drivers can have their licence revoked on reaching six points.
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  • 1
    'On the same occasion' is interpreted by the court. - that's the rub. – jqning Jun 1 '15 at 16:17

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