Know your rights in a road block
JOHANNESBURG — The Ministry of Transport said there were 845 roadblocks across the country during December last year and warned it can be easy for people to find themselves unintentionally on the wrong side of the law.
Head of FNB’s Law on Call Tertius Bossert gave the following tips on your rights when you get stopped at a roadblock.
“When you are stopped at a roadblock, the law enforcement officer will ask you for your personal details, of these you are obliged to give your name and address. Similarly, you are entitled to ask an officer for proof of identity,” said Bossert.
You may not be arrested for any outstanding traffic fines, if there is no warrant of arrest for the fines. However, if you have given the officer cause to arrest you, it is not advisable to resist arrest.
“If you are arrested, the arresting officer is required to read you your rights immediately, and he must take you directly to a police station, nowhere else,” explains Bossert.
Depending on what you are arrested for, you will have the right to apply for bail at the police station. Getting yourself out of a police station is not a complicated process, however, quality legal advice can go a long way in ensuring you’re never alone when an unexpected legal matter arises.
Get a designated sober driver if you plan to drink.