A car mechanic from Bordon has been slapped with a £1,300 fine and 200 hours' community service for issuing fraudulent MOT certificates at a garage in Godalming.

Benjamin Aaron Sinclair, 29, of Grasmere Close, admitted seven counts of fraud by false representation at Guildford Magistrates Court on January 4.

Sinclair was accused of issuing MOT certificates to seven vehicles without performing a test in order to make a financial gain, while working at Godalming Garage Ltd in Douglas Drive, Godalming.

His offending took place between February 18 and April 6 last year.

Magistrates ordered Sinclair to complete 200 hours of unpaid work within the next 12 months, as well as £1,300 costs and a £95 surcharge to fund victim services.

The MOT test is a mandatory annual check for vehicles in the UK to ensure that they meet road safety and environmental standards.

Tests are conducted by 60,000 privately employed MOT testers at around 23,000 testing stations in Great Britain.

The Driver and Vehicle Standards Agency (DVSA) is responsible for regulating MOTs and their providers to ensure they are conducted to the correct standards.

While the vast majority of the 30 million MOTs carried out annually are conducted to the appropriate standard, there are still instances of fraud and cheating in the system.

DVSA monitors the industry closely and acts on poor and fraudulent practice. This is done through proactive work and in response to reports from the public and official bodies.

From 2021 to 2022, DVSA recorded a total of 1,324 counts of MOT Fraud.

Of these, 710 were the most serious cases relating to dishonesty and negligence. This is a significant increase from 2017 to 2018, when there were less than half this number (351).

DVSA also has the power to ban individuals from testing. In 2021, a total of 127 authorised examiners were banned from running Vehicle Testing Stations, and 288 were banned from the MOT scheme.

This includes bans for 85 authorised examiner and 185 tester cases relating to the most serious offences such as dishonesty and gross negligence.

Godalming Garage Ltd has been approached for a comment.