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Redflex Corruption

Posted: Nov 29 2009 12:53 pm
by Jim_H
I got a ticket in the mail yesterday. Here is the "evidence" against me. If I were doing 79 in the 65 as claimed, I would have been in the trunk of the car in front of me. I am car #2 behind the truck. A car from Colorado is passing me, and he may have been going 79, but I don't know. If he was, it looks like I got his ticket.

AZDPS and Redflex are clearly lying about the quality control they claim to do, and they have no problems sending a ticket to an innocent victim to help tighten the budget problem and fatten the corporate profits. If they looked at the videos as they claim to do, I never would have gotten this.

Something tells me I am not the first person to whom this has happened. Is anyone interested in starting a class action lawsuit against a company which gathers evidence for the state without a private investigators license, and has profit as its motive behind "law enforcement"?

Re: Redflex Corruption

Posted: Jul 08 2020 11:52 am
by hikeaz
Never ones to let any ill-gotten dollars slip through the cracks...

Foreign providers of red light cameras and speed cameras have pocketed millions in US federal taxpayer bailouts in the wake of the Covid-19 virus scare. Data released by the Small Business Administration and US Treasury indicate that photo ticketing companies, including firms based overseas and embroiled in scandal, collected up to $9 million in subsidies under the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP).

Although technically a" loan", the PPP funding is "forgivable" -- that is, the company does not pay it back -- as long the firm says that 60 percent of the funds were used for payroll and employee levels were maintained during the crisis. (Oh sure... "scout's honor, you have our 'word' on that") .

The biggest bribers out there, Redflex Traffic Systems, based in Melbourne, Australia, collected up to $5 million under the program. That will help the company balance the books, as it has failed to turn a profit since it was caught in 2014 bribing officials in Illinois and Ohio. The chief of US operations for Redflex, its executive vice president, its lobbyist, its contractor and a Chicago city official were all convicted of felonies in the scandal, but the corruption was more widespread. A Redflex official testified that envelopes filled with cash handed to politicians in Arizona, California, Colorado, Florida, Georgia, Illinois, Massachusetts, New Jersey, New Mexico, Ohio, Tennessee, Virginia and Washington to bribe them into supporting automated enforcement.

Sensys Gatso, which is based in Jonkoping, Sweden, took up to $1 million in bailout funds. Redspeed, also took up to $1 million. Redspeed formerly was based in Kidderminster, England, until being sold last year to Sdiptech AB, which is based in Stockholm, Sweden.

Safespeed collected as much as $2 million, despite being the target of an ongoing federal corruption probe. Former Illinois state Senate Transportation Committee chairman Martin A. Sandoval admitted he took $250,000 in bribes from Safespeed to become the defender of photo enforcement in the legislature. Patrick J. Doherty, the chief of staff to Cook County Commissioner Jeff Tobolski, bribed local officials on Safespeed's behalf. Chicago consultant William A. Helm was indicted for slipping cash to Sandoval so he would pressure the Illinois Department of Transportation.

Re: Redflex Corruption

Posted: Jul 08 2020 12:12 pm
by LosDosSloFolks
Wait just a minute....did I read that right? Are you saying that there are corrupt public officials in Cook County Illinois? Hard to believe. :roll:

Re: Redflex Corruption

Posted: Jul 08 2020 12:44 pm
by chumley
@LosDosSloFolks The Cook County Assessor's office is all good though :)

Re: Redflex Corruption

Posted: Jul 14 2020 12:09 pm
by hikeaz
Arizona Town Accused Of Illegal Red Light Camera Meeting
A complaint filed Friday with Arizona attorney general Mark Brnovich accused the town of Fountain Hills of violating the state's open meeting law to advance the installation of red light cameras. Several of the town's council members, including the mayor, discussed what it might take to bring cameras into the town, according to records obtained under a freedom of information request. The complaint filed by Arizona Campaign for Liberty Director Shawn Dow cited a 2005 attorney general ruling that stated such contact was not permitted.

"Mayor Dickey -- knowing these cameras were going to cost this town millions in lawsuits -- is willing to break the law to sneak them in while everyone is on lockdown," says Mr. Dow "She is trying to use these cameras to cover her inept budgeting skills -- she lost the tax increase she wanted to push through, so she is trying to punish us with unconstitutional cameras."

Under state law, members of a public body cannot conduct an email exchange involving a "quorum" of members regarding matters that might come before the council. Mayor Ginny Dickey, vice mayor Mike Scharnow, councilman Sherry Leckrone and councilman Dennis Brown emailed comments to one another on the subject in a series of separate emails. Four of the council's seven members constitute a quorum.

"I'd like to keep cameras on our 'radar' (get it?)," mayor Dickey wrote in a November 25, 2019, to Brown. (Not just a cheater, but a bad comedian to boot)

Another email chain was triggered when Fountain Hills Times reporter Bob Burns asked on July 7 about signs that had appeared in the community opposing red light cameras. Burns asked whether the city was being lobbied by red light camera vendors. Mayor Dickey asked if Burns could "check on" who was funding anti-camera signs that had appeared throughout the town. Image
The town council on August 24 will take a final vote approving the use of cameras that tickets people making slow, right-turns on red. US Department of Transportation statistics show that such turns rarely cause accidents. Proponents of right turn cameras say the devices "save lives" of pedestrians and cyclists, but the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) study concluded otherwise.

"The vast majority of fatalities [for cyclists and pedestrians] did not occur at or near intersections," the report explained. (But the MONEY is at intersections)

An average motorist could drive a billion miles -- the distance from Earth to Jupiter and back -- before being involved in an accident that resulted from a motorist making a rolling stop on a right-hand turn. A rolling right turn study in California came to the same conclusion .

Re: Redflex Corruption

Posted: Jul 14 2020 5:10 pm
by big_load

Re: Redflex Corruption

Posted: Aug 11 2020 12:00 pm
by hikeaz
The current mayor of Crestwood, Illinois, will be arraigned Thursday (8/13/20) on felony corruption charges related to his relationship with a red light camera company. According to the indictment unsealed Friday, Louis Presta faces up to eight years in prison if convicted of bribery, lying to federal agents and filing a bogus tax return.
US Attorney John R. Lausch Jr said that when the Federal Bureau of Investigation interviewed Presta about the allegations, the mayor denied taking cash, gifts and campaign contributions from Safespeed, the photo ticketing vendor. The FBI then confronted Presta with video of him accepting an envelope filled with $5000 in cash on March 7, 2018. Presta claimed the envelope was actually empty. (Ha-ha; really?)
In 2016, a Crestwood village news release "welcomed red light cameras" that Safespeed installed and operated. The devices were installed "after careful consideration and detailed analysis," the release claimed. The village's own insurance company, Catlin Indemnity, understood otherwise. In 2017, it refused to cover the massive legal bills that were accumulating from a challenge to the controversial way Safespeed has been issuing automated tickets to vehicles making right hand turns at the intersection of Cicero Avenue and Cal Sag Road.
Thanks to the bribes, Presta made "substantially more" than the $97,566 that he declared on his calendar year 2018 tax return. ('Empty' envelope notwhithstanding)

Re: Redflex Corruption

Posted: Aug 18 2020 11:25 am
by hikeaz
Another Illinois state senator with ties to the photo enforcement industry faces federal charges. Senator Terrance P. Link (D-Vernon Hills), a member of the state Legislative Ethics Committee (ha-ha. Can ya GET any more ironic?), was charged last week with tax fraud. In 2009, Link introduced a bill allowing the installation of speed cameras. Governor Pat Quinn (D) signed the Chicago speed camera bill three years later.
The US attorney for the Northern District of Illinois did not charge Link with accepting any bribes related to photo enforcement. Instead, he faces a single count** of fraud for reporting just $264,450 as his income in 2016.

**- The lack of any other charges could possibly be a reward for his willingness to work with the Federal Bureau of Investigation. As SOMEONE wore a wire to expose state Senator Martin Sandoval (D-Cicero) accepting cash bribes offered in the name of Safespeed, the red light camera operator.

Re: Redflex Corruption

Posted: Aug 18 2020 11:33 am
by LosDosSloFolks
Call me a nut job, but I'm beginning to get the wild idea that there is public office corruption in Illinois. Sarcasm intended. ;-)

Re: Redflex Corruption

Posted: Aug 18 2020 11:43 am
by hikeaz
Amazing that these camera leeches have to BRIBE these people in the interest of "increased safety". GOBS of Sarcasm....

Re: Redflex Corruption

Posted: Aug 31 2020 2:45 pm
by hikeaz
Arizona: Public Opposition Defeats Red Light Camera Proposal

Going into a special meeting Monday, members of the Fountain Hills, Arizona, Town Council were unanimous in supporting the installation of a new red light camera. By the meeting's end, however, all seven councilmen voted to drop the idea permanently. Public opposition to the idea took center stage in the discussion.
"I received an avalanche of emails," councilman Alan Magazine explained.
Members discussed getting comments from residents calling them "money-grubbing Nazis." Members of the public lined up at the meeting to express their opposition to the plan. The attorney general was even called in to investigate allegations that the council violated open meeting laws by discussing their position in secret to coordinate their 'support' for the cameras. This opposition had an effect.

"I was one hundred percent for this camera -- until I started doing my research," councilman David Spelich explained. - - - - Amazing that he decided to do his 'investigating' AFTER making up his mind.
Spelich was surprised to learn that the cameras recorded video of every passing driver on a 24/7 basis. He was concerned about the possibility that the private companies running the program could misuse this information. Possibility?
"Having a twenty-four year career in law enforcement, I thought I knew what red light cameras were and speed cameras were until I started researching them," Spelich continued. "I called the Chicago fusion center and spoke to somebody that had knowledge of red light cameras. They use red light cameras and speed cameras on a daily basis to track people... I find that very troubling... These companies have the sole rights to all these videos... They have the right to share that information with whomever they want to share that information."

Members of the city staff had recommended that a red light camera be installed at the intersection of Palisades Boulevard and Shea Boulevard to mail automated citations to people making slow, rolling right turns. (BIG note here: US Department of Transportation statistics shows that an average motorist could drive a billion miles — the distance from Earth to Jupiter and back — before being involved in an accident that resulted from a motorist making a right-turn-on-red. Even these few crashes involved failure to yield the right-of-way; previously stopping, or not stopping, were not the primary cause of these accidents.) So...'rolling red' tickets;... are they after 'safety' or 'dead presidents'?

Cities with ticket cameras sell the cameras to the public by explaining that they’ll help prevent right-angle crashes. However, the majority of tickets given out inevitably end up being for minor rolling-right-turn violations.Nonetheless, they complained about the way companies like Redflex Traffic Systems of Australia and Verra Mobility (formerly American Traffic Solutions) had responded to their inquiries.
"I attempted to get as much information as I could," public works director Justin Weldy said. "To say it was a challenging would be the very least... [The companies maintained] proprietary and contractual secrecy on how they make their money and what they do in regard to photo enforcement."

The vote was seven to zero to reject the camera proposal outright. As an alternative, council members supported a look at engineering fixes that could improve traffic safety at the location. - - - What a CONCEPT!

Arizona is home to the first public revolt at the ballot box against the use of automated ticketing machines. In 1991, more than two-thirds of Peoria voters decided to overturn the city council's photo radar deal with the company that went on to become Verra Mobility. Large majorities also voted cameras out in Sierra Vista and Tucson among others.

Re: Redflex Corruption

Posted: Sep 02 2020 11:24 am
by hikeaz
9/2/20 - Federal prosecutors have formally charged another photo enforcement executive with bribery. Omar Maani, co-founder and co-owner of the photo ticketing firm Safespeed must appear before US District Court Judge John Robert Blakey on Friday to answer the accusation.

Agents from the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) secretly recorded Safespeed representatives offering cash to suburban Chicago, Illinois, officials in return for their support for installing highly profitable red light camera systems. A judge last month ordered the recordings of Crestwood mayor Lou Presta taking bribes sealed because of the possibility disclosures that might harm innocent third parties.

Maani is thought to have been wearing a wire to record Patrick J. Doherty, who was a Safespeed salesman by night and the chief of staff to Cook County Commissioner Jeff Tobolski during the day. Tobolski on Tuesday admitted that he took $250,000 in bribes and cheated on his taxes. The information so far released by the US attorney's office does not link Tobolski to the Safespeed scandal, aside from his chief of staff conspiring with Maani to bribe Oak Lawn village trustees into signing a red light camera deal with Safespeed on February 25, 2014.

Maani, Doherty and someone only identified as "Individual B" funneled the Oak Lawn bribe through a close relative of the village official. Doherty was recorded telling Maani that the money was being paid to the relative "just on the chance of, uh, that we can get the other ones in Oak Lawn and get [unnamed Oak Lawn trustee] on our side."

Tobolski is also cooperating with federal investigators in the red light camera probe that has so far secured an admission from Senate Transportation Committee Chairman Martin A. Sandoval, that he did in fact take bribes from a Safespeed representative in return for his work to kill anti-photo enforcement legislation. The legislative champion of speed cameras, state Senator Terrance P. Link (D-Vernon Hills), was charged with tax fraud.

Re: Redflex Corruption

Posted: Sep 23 2020 11:42 am
by hikeaz
Embattled red light camera operator Safespeed took comfort in a federal judge's decision to put off further proceedings out of virus fears.
US District Judge Robert M. Dow Jr had scheduled a hearing for Friday but decided instead to postpone further consideration of a racketeering lawsuit against Safespeed. He will accept final briefings in November on whether to allow the suit to proceed and issue a ruling by mail. The suit is asking for $70 million in refunds to the motorists ticketed through the scheme.
Action by the US Department of Justice has already caught Safespeed co-founder Omar Maani involved in the plot to bribe suburban Illinois politicians into signing up for the highly lucrative automated ticketing service. Maani earlier this month admitted his guilt and entered a deferred prosecution agreement that allows him to avoid serving time in prison in return for his turning evidence against those with whom he did business.

Re: Redflex Corruption

Posted: Oct 21 2020 11:18 am
by hikeaz
After five years of use, red light cameras in Fayetteville, North Carolina, have failed to produce the promised reduction in traffic accidents. Since 2015 the city has allowed private vendor Verra Mobility (formerly American Traffic Solutions) to issue automated tickets under a new ordinance, yet the number of collisions climbed where the devices were used. Data released by the city council last week compared collision figures two years prior to installation and two years afterward.

Sometimes the cameras have presented a direct threat to motorists in Fayetteville. In 2011, a 24-year-old woman was struck and killed by a Fayetteville red light camera that fell on the car in which she was a passenger. Under the current photo enforcement program, Verra Mobility has issued a total of 125,921 tickets worth over $12.5 million at a dozen intersections. The raw figures show thirty more accidents occurred after the cameras became active. These were not "minor fender benders" as the severity index in the North Carolina Department of Transportation accident database reflected a small increase in severity. Both angle crashes and rear end collisions increased, though the percentage increase was not statistically significant.