A couple who flew to Spain on holiday are fighting a prosecution for speeding which they say was committed using their car after leaving it at the airport.
Gary Thornburn and Clare Beads handed in their Volkswagen Golf GTI to Manchester Airport’s Meet and Greet service on August 3.
The pair claim they jetted off to Murcia and returned on August 16 to a letter telling them their car had been caught travelling at 55mph in a 30mph zone on August 5.
The road where the alleged offence had been committed was in Manchester’s Openshaw suburb, a 25-minute drive from the airport.
Manchester Airport insists the car Gary and Clare handed in stayed in its secure off-site facility for the entirety of their trip.
The couple say the car shown in pictures sent with the prosecution letter has the same number plate and looks identical to theirs.
But to make matters more baffling, the airport’s managers claim the car handed in by the couple is not the one shown in the photos.
Gary told Manchester Evening News: ‘I knew they would transport it elsewhere to a safe location.
‘We used the official meet and greet firm as we wanted to make sure the car was looked after because it was very expensive.
‘I wouldn’t have ever thought somebody would’ve been driving around in it going at such a speed. It’s a criminal offence and extremely dangerous going 55mph in a 30 zone.’
The couple say they have contacted Greater Manchester Police to tell them they were not driving the car at the time of the offence and are waiting to hear back.
Gary added: ‘I have used meet and greet firms before and never had an issue.
‘I knew they take the cars off site to somewhere else, but you don’t think you’ll be accused of speeding 11 miles away from the airport.’
A spokesman for Manchester Airport said: ‘We are aware that a customer who booked Meet & Greet car parking at Manchester Airport has received a notice of intended prosecution from Greater Manchester Police, which relates to an alleged speeding offence that took place while they were on holiday.
‘We understand this would be distressing for the customer concerned, and launched an immediate investigation after being notified. This investigation has indicated the car that was booked in with us remained in a secure storage area until it was collected by the customer on their return. The key to the vehicle was also securely stored throughout.
‘Further investigations indicate the vehicle shown in the speed camera image is different to the one that was left with us. While the customer concerned has not made a complaint to Manchester Airport, we have made several attempts to speak with them directly, in order to share our findings and remain eager to do so, as well as assisting the police in any enquiries they wish to make into the matter.
‘We want to assure customers that there are a number of strict security measures in place to monitor the whereabouts of vehicles left with us and ensure they are kept safe at all times.’
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