Driver’s £150 bill to get stolen car back

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A MAN has spoken of his anger at receiving a £150 bill to have his stolen car returned.

Steve Juett, 51, realised his Ford Mondeo had been taken from outside his home in Queensbury in the early hours on Friday.

He said he reported the theft to police and received a call later in the day to say it had been found in Wibsey.

Forensic tests needed to be carried out, but he was told he could have the car back - at a cost of £150.

“They said it was at a garage in Huddersfield,” he said.

“If I didn’t collect it the first day, they said it would be another £20 per day after that.

“I can’t afford to get it back. The police should catch the people who did it and get the money off them.” He said he does not want to claim the fee from his insurance company because he would have to pay the excess, his premium would go up and he would lose his no-claims discount.

He says he has a friend who could have recovered the vehicle instead of the police.

A spokesman for West Yorkshire Police said: “Abandoned vehicles pose a danger to the public and are at risk of being vandalised or re-stolen. For this reason, it is the policy of West Yorkshire Police to recover all stolen vehicles that are found unattended.

“The charges made for the recovery and storage of vehicles is laid down nationally. Those who pay recovery costs to get their vehicle back can claim it on their insurance.

“It must be recognised that if West Yorkshire Police was to routinely fund the recovery of vehicles, this would either need the requirement for additional funding from ratepayers or significant savings elsewhere in our overall budget.”