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Motorists charged with speeding to be able to enter plea online

From next week, drivers charged with offences such as speeding will be able to enter a plea online. Credit: PA Wire

Motorists charged with minor driving offences such as speeding will be able to enter a plea online as part of a new Government service.

The Make A Plea service, due to be launched next month in England and Wales, will allow defendants to respond with a plea from any computer, tablet or phone 24 hours a day through a secure website.

The service will be used as an alternative to a postal plea or attending court.

The Government hope the roll-out - which follows a successful pilot in Manchester last year - will save time and money for the courts.

Courts Minister Shailesh Vara said: "Digital technology gives us an opportunity to make the justice system simpler, clearer and faster - and part of this means reducing or removing the unnecessary movement of paper, and people, around the system.

"The new 'Make a Plea' service is reducing case time and costs for the courts and the police, ensuring that they can focus on the most complex cases.

"It makes it easy, simple and quick for people to access justice."

While welcoming the scheme, the AA warned drivers not to make a plea while using mobile phone behind the wheel.

"We welcome the use of technology but we make a plea to the 500,000 drivers using mobile phones at the wheel not to 'make their plea' from the wheel of the car or they could end up making another plea," AA president Edmund King said.