ALBUQUERQUE (KRQE) - More than a year after the cameras were turned off, the city is starting to go after thousands and thousands of drivers who blew through red lights and then blew off the ticket for it.
Ignoring the ticket again could be costly. A judge could come down hard on those drivers if they don't pay up.
"The citations are valid and payable," Jim Fuller with CreditWatch said.
The red light cameras stopped flashing at the end of 2011 after voters decided to pull the plug on the program, but the push to collect is just ramping up.
"We are certainly doing a public service giving the registered owner of the offending vehicle the opportunity to make payment and restitution on the outstanding violation," said Fuller.
People owe money; try $21million dollars including late fees. Now Redflex, the company that operated the cameras, which is still due four million bucks from the city, has hired CreditWatch to start collecting.
So what' happens to people who don't pay? It's not just their credit that could take a hit.
"Violators who do not pay restitution are subject to litigation," Fuller said.
That's right, Redflex will take them to court where a judge could garnish their wages or put a lean on their property. So just how many people are we talking about? More than 89,000 people dating back to 2004, and if you think the old "prove it was my car trick" will work all these years later.
"We can provide them with an online website where the violation can be viewed," Fuller said.
Fuller tells News 13 there are about 122 people who owe about a grand each, and then there is Amber Gray. We've showed you her bad driving before ; caught time and time again by the cameras speeding through intersections and blowing through red lights. We've learned she's got about 100 outstanding tickets.
Don't expect to pay just what the ticket was worth originally, there are late fees too. if you do go to court, you could also be forced to pay attorney fees for both sides and court costs.
The city struck this deal with Redflex to collect the money; otherwise the city would have owed the company more than four million dollars for its cut of the unpaid tickets. The mayor's office also says, by state law, it can't just ignore unpaid tickets. The city and state will split the rest of the money that's collected.
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