Total Logistics (Scotland) director disqualified over fronting concerns

Ashleigh Wight
December 19, 2016


Scotland’s traffic commissioner (TC) Joan Aitken has disqualified a Glasgow-based haulier and its director from holding an O-licence for five years, following concerns that it had been a front for a disqualified operator.

Total Logistics (Scotland) had its O-licence revoked following a public inquiry (PI) in Edinburgh in October.

Sister company A&S Transport Ecosse also had its permission to run HGVs rescinded on 9 December and has been disqualified for five years.

The TC found that, for the most part, Total Logistics (Scotland)’s haulage operation was under the control of Scott McClung and those associated with him. McClung and his company SDS Logistics, which shared a yard with Total Logistics (Scotland), were disqualified from holding an O-licence in 2011.

The PI was told that SDS Logistics paid the drivers that drove Total Logistics (Scotland)’s vehicles and received their instructions from McClung and those working for him. There was no evidence of Total Logistics (Scotland) paying the drivers’ wages.

Aitken found that Total Logistics (Scotland), which applied for an O-licence shortly after SDS Logistics was disqualified, had provided a means whereby SDS Logistics had access to an O-licence.

The TC also determined that A&S Transport Ecosse, which Total Logistics (Scotland) director Robert Ball had purchased earlier this year, also allowed SDS Logistics to run HGVs under its O-licence. She found former A&S Transport Ecosse director Alexander Beattie had not been in control of the business before it was sold.

Total Logistics (Scotland) also wanted to apply to operate in the south of England, but a vehicle that had been removed from the company’s O-licence in Scotland was stopped in Kent without a valid O-licence disc.

Ball told the PI that he had been distancing himself from SDS Logistics and McClung since the DVSA’s investigations had begun, however the TC said he had done “nothing to sever the relationship either then or before and he did nothing later as the arrangement survived until at least early 2016”.

No evidence of financial standing was provided by Total Logistics (Scotland) at the PI.

Aitken said in her written decision: “The timescale of non-compliance starts at the point of application in 2011 when the fronting arrangement was positioned and it continued to 2016. The non-compliance is at the serious end given the engagement with a disqualified person and even the forays in England.”

She said Beattie’s involvement in A&S Transport Ecosse had been “a very sorry affair from which his repute either as operator or as transport manager cannot survive”. He was disqualified for three years.

Former transport manager Leon Kobiela, who had resigned from Total Logistics (Scotland) in January, has also been disqualified from holding a transport manager position for an indefinite period.

Ball told that he intends to make an appeal against the decision on behalf of Total Logistics (Scotland).

About the Author


Ashleigh Wight

Ashleigh is a former news reporter for Commercial Motor and Motor Transport and currently the editor of OHW+ and HR and wellbeing editor at Personnel Today.

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