A Scottish operator who claimed to have forgotten he owned an HGV and couldn’t explain what large transactions on his bank statements related to has had his O-licence application refused.
Traffic commissioner (TC) Claire Gilmore said it was “entirely incredible” that Ryan McGovern had not remembered he owned a goods vehicle just a few months before he appeared before her at a Glasgow public inquiry (PI).
McGovern said he currently hired out mini-diggers, but was keen to diversify into grab hire, and when the TC asked him if he owned a vehicle he said no.
However, when the operator was asked what large payments on his bank statements related to, McGovern was unable to say.
In a written decision, TC Gilmore said: “He first sought to explain by saying he was very tired and hadn’t slept the previous evening.
“He then told me he had forgotten, despite having given evidence that he was not in possession of a vehicle earlier, that he had actually had a vehicle before. The payments related to that.”
She added: “Mr McGovern did not seek to explain why a goods vehicle was apparently being operated by him without an O-licence or how he could have ‘forgotten’ that he had had a vehicle in his possession.”
The TC also had concerns about the nominated transport manager, Ryan Gorman, who she said was on notice due to him being nominated on several licences and then his name being removed once the applications were submitted.
Summing up, Gilmore said: “There was insufficient evidence to support a finding that Mr McGovern was using that vehicle unlawfully, without an O-licence. However, what was clear from his evidence, was that he had not intended to disclose that he had previously had
a vehicle in his possession.
“Similarly, I was unimpressed by the confused, contradictory nature of Mr Gorman’s evidence and the manner in which he conducted himself at inquiry.
“The implausibility and unreliable nature of Mr McGovern’s evidence, coupled with the fact that he appeared to know so little about his own business, leads me to conclude that I would not be able to trust him to comply with the operator licensing regime. If I cannot trust him, I cannot find him, or his company, to have repute.”