What on earth does Public Transport Victoria think it is doing? It is acting as if it is above the law.
Here is a story sent in to me by a Melbourne commuter. In short: he had touched on, and was actively prevented from touching off by an Authorised Officer, who then charged him with Fail to produce a valid ticket and Refuse name and address.
Here is his story:
On the morning of March 5th, 2014, I was traveling from my home in Yarraville, to work near Parliament railway station.
I had a valid myki which I touched on when I commenced my journey at Yarraville railway station. I changed trains at Southern Cross in order to get to Parliament station.
On exiting Parliament station, I noticed a larger than usual crowd attempting to exit the station. The crowd was using both the barriers, and the overflow (pedestal only) area.
I chose to exit via the overflow (pedestal only) areas, as there were less people using it than were using the barriers.
A number of Authorised Officers were checking (what I assumed to be) a random selection of travelers.
These Authorised Officer were on the ‘inside’ of the pedestals (that is, on the train side of the world. The Authorised Officers were checking the myki’s of people who were yet to touch off).
As all Authorised Officers were busy, I simply proceeded to the closest available pedestal and attempted to touch off.
Touch Off Interrupted by Authorised Officer
As my hand approached, and was in fact at the pedestal, an Authorised Officer swept my hand away from the pedestal.
The Authorised Officer must have lunged towards me in order to do this, as, when I approached the pedestal, I saw no idle Authorised Officers standing in a position to engage me.
It must be noted that the Authorised Officer actively prevented me from touching off; he interrupted an activity which I had commenced PRIOR TO any interaction by the Authorised Officer.