Mr Daniel and his father-in-law were at the start of their annual fishing trip to Eden in NSW on February 26 last year.
On the way they laughed at media reports and a radio campaign claiming drivers had been wrongly fined at the Wellington Rd bridge.
“I jokingly said, ‘Here comes the Wellington Rd bridge, have a look at my speed’,” Mr Daniel recalled.
“He leaned over and had a look at my speed and said, ‘Yep no worries’, and we laughed … I was going between 95km/h and 97km/h. Two weeks later I get the fine in the mail.”
The penalty notice alleged Mr Daniel was speeding at 110km/h in a 100km/h zone.
He couldn’t pay a solicitor, but armed with advice from a barrister friend he decided to fight the charges himself.
He spent weeks researching state and federal law, the National Measurement Act and previous court cases, in his lunch breaks and after work.
“I was willing to fight tooth and nail all the way to the High Court,” he said.
“That’s how passionate I was about fighting something I was accused of that I didn’t do.”
Late last year, a magistrate upheld the prosecution case, but Mr Daniel appealed and this week Judge Geoffrey Chettle dismissed the charges in the County Court.
Mr Daniel claimed the judge had believed the testimony of himself and of his father-in-law.
He said he believed the judge had expressed the view that he preferred their evidence over that of a machine.
“I was so happy that I forgot to ask for costs,” Mr Daniel said.
The southbound camera in lane two, which Mr Daniel has now beaten, fined 5798 drivers in the 2014-15 financial year, raking in $1.2 million, making it Victoria’s 41st highest-earning speed camera.
“The cameras are flawed,” Mr Daniel said.
“People should not blindly pay up when they know they weren’t speeding.”
Traffic and criminal defence lawyer Michael Kuzilny said Mr Daniel’s success could set a precedent.
“Victorians are losing their licences on demerit points and losing thousands of dollars for offences they didn’t commit,” he said.
“It would be refreshing that some drivers could win cases on corroborated evidence.”
The camera commissioner conducted a year-long probe into EastLink cameras in 2013 after complaints, but found they were accurate.
In 2011, a policewoman nabbed by an EastLink camera beat a speeding fine after evidence from a 16-year-old work experience student who was in her patrol car and had looked at its speedo just before the officer drove under the camera.
heraldsun.com.au 19 May 2016
Make no mistake about it EVERY SINGLE 'fine' is unlawful, irrespective of the technicalities of inaccurate speed cameras, as in this case.
- extortion and
- unlawful incarceration