Has Devon County Council, or any agency on their behalf, served notice to, or prosecuted another party, under any of sections 130, 137 or 138 of the Highways Act 1980 within the last 10 years?
We have a record of served notices however, we have not identified records of any prosecutions under the specified Highways Act Sections.
If they have, where can I view details of these actions?
With regards to current and ongoing actions we consider that release of this information is exempt under Regulation 12(5)b of the Environmental Information Regulations 2004 – the course of justice and inquiries. Devon County Council considers releasing the detail of future prosecutions would likely prejudice investigations, court proceedings and convictions.
We have considered the public interest in this case and we acknowledge that there is a public interest in the transparency around the detail of notices served however, we also consider that the public needs to have confidence in the ability of the Authority to ensure the effective investigation and prosecution of offences. We therefore, consider that the public interest lies in withholding the information.
With regards to historic and spent actions we would be able to consider release of material, excepting for information considered personal data under Regulation 13. As the data requested is not held in a manner that would make it easily accessible to extract we consider the request to be manifestly unreasonable in its current format (Regulation 12(4)b). To extract the documentation would require a review of tens of thousands of records for each year requested. However, we have a duty under Regulation 9 of the Act to provide advice and assistance in helping narrow the request requirements and therefore we would suggest that if you are able to narrow your request to a specific location and timeframe then we would be able to consider further whether we can provide a response to your request.