Police review case against Hatzola drivers who used blue lights

Police are reviewing whether to pursue charges against two drivers for using blue lights while working for the Hatzola Jewish ambulance service, after a similar case failed two weeks ago.

Bury district Judge Paul Richardson cleared two Hatzola members from Manchester of using blue lights and sirens illegally and rejected claims by Greater Manchester Police (GMP) that the emergency service was not using its vehicles as ambulances.

Now GMP are consulting with the Crown Prosecution Service over whether to go ahead with a case against two more Hatzola volunteers who are due to appear in court next month both charged with the same offence, and a separate charge of careless driving.

Judge Richardson’s verdict does not set a legal precedent, but will make it more difficult for police to win its case against Joseph Sandler and Simon Hanson, who were charged after attending a medical emergency in Salford in March.

Manchester Hatzola director Myer Heilpern said: “We are only hoping in light of recent developments that GMP accept that our vehicles are being used for ambulance purposes, and police will take a commonsense view of the law as it stands.”

Last updated: 5:45pm, October 17 2013