A BUS driver accused of tearing down Ulez cameras is "over the moon" after being told the case against him has been dropped.
Prosecutors claimed Kingsley Hamilton was the supposed ringleader and chief of a vigilante group of "blade runners" pinching and destroying the hated tech.
The 45-year-old was arrested on May 18 after being found near where a TfL cam, valued at £6,237, had been damaged.
He was wearing latex gloves and a black hoodie with tools and “f*** the Ulez” stickers in his pockets around midnight in Bromley, south east London.
Kingsley denied committing criminal damage and going equipped for theft at Bromley Magistrates Court on June 9 and was set to appear at Woolwich Crown Court on July 7.
But the charges were dropped when a key witness claimed the suspect looked different and appeared to be wearing a balaclava.
Read More ULEZ stories
Labour must explain why drivers are being hit in cost of living crisis, PM blasts
Sadiq Khan ‘scraps plan to charge fossil fuel cars in London’ – ULEZ latest
After being bailed on suspicion of ripping other cameras down, Kingsley was told he faced no further action at Croydon Police Station this month.
Kingsley, of Wallington, south London, said: “I have maintained my innocence throughout and now this has been proven due to a sheer lack of evidence.
“I had so many people turn up at court in support of me, almost like a Robin Hood.
"Personally, I wonder if authorities were afraid about what would happen if I went down as a martyr.
Most read in Motors
Sadiq Khan 'scraps plan to charge fossil fuel cars in London' – ULEZ latest
Incredible Fords made famous by classic ITV series sell for eye-watering price
Warning to drivers over ULEZ zone scam which could see you conned out of £1,000s
Moment cops scuffle with protesters as ULEZ fury erupts
“London boroughs hate Ulez for obvious reasons so I was confident a jury would side with me anyway – similar to the Colston Four who hauled a statue down in Bristol.
“But I’m so pleased it never came to that and over the moon I’m a free man.
"Up yours, Sadiq Khan."
Videos appearing to show a culprit filming his stash of stolen cameras stored in a shed went viral on social media last month.
Transport for London (TfL) said vandalism was “unacceptable” and “all incidents are reported to the police for investigation”.
Some clips were previously posted on a Facebook page Kingsley runs named Action Against Unfair Ulez, which has 47,000 followers.
'STEALTH TAX ON POOR'
He regularly attends anti-Ulez protests across London and the Home Counties where he is known for carrying a coffin labelled “democracy”.
The dad stood in the recent Uxbridge and South Ruislip by-election – in which Labour blamed London Mayor Sadiq Khan’s despised policy for gifting the Tories a win.
Standing for MP as “Kingsley Hamilton Anti Ulez”, he gained more votes than any other independent candidate – and 18 more than the famous Count Binface.
Kingsley, who claimed he used to work for TfL before joining a private coach company, added: “The court of public opinion is so strongly against the policy.
“I really want clean air but the way to achieve it is through renewable energy and biofuels.
“We won’t get it by forcing polluting cars out of the city and into the countryside where they will be used more and for longer due to a lack of public transport.
“I care about the environment and I’m by no means a climate change denier. But Ulez is making it worse and is a stealth tax on the poor. It needs scrapping now before it’s too late.”
All reports of vandalism against Ulez cameras are investigated by the Met’s dedicated team of officers under Operation Eremon.
Detective Superintendent Daniel Smith, leading the probe, said: “We have been proactively targeting those we suspect of causing or seeking to cause damage.
Read More on The Sun
I’m an ex-paramedic – the dangerous food that acts like a plug on a child’s airway
Peter Andre reveals sad ‘real reason’ he never has birthday parties
“We are carrying out a thorough investigation and this includes gathering CCTV, speaking to potential witnesses and following up active leads.
“We are also working with TfL to prevent further offences in the future.”
Source: Read Full Article