‘Completely wrong’: Driver accused of stealing petrol slams ‘ridiculous’ mix-up

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Paul Patterson, a bus driver from Highbury Vale in Nottingham, went to fill up his car at the Tesco Esso petrol station in Basford on October 3. He paid £22 altogether, £20 for the petrol and £2 in the shop.

While he was there, he drove into the forecourt and waited for his wife, who was shopping, before driving off.

The 57-year-old later received a letter from Nottinghamshire Police saying he was believed to have stolen fuel.

They believed he had filled his car up with £35.22 worth of fuel before driving off without paying.

Mr Patterson said: “They have got it completely wrong.

“I only found out about it when I got a letter from the force headquarters. If I had paid cash, which I nearly did and often do, and not taken a receipt, I would have had no way of prove I had paid for it.

“I hadn’t done anything wrong and I was being accused of being a thief.”

“It’s ridiculous,” he told Nottinghamshire Live.

Tesco has since apologised, saying a car had left the Valley Road petrol station without paying.

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The mistake had been made when identifying which vehicle was involved.

Mr Patterson was behind the actual driver who drove off from the pump without paying.

But Tesco said that Mr Patterson also pulled his car away from the pump before completing payment.

Tesco did clarify Mr Patterson didn’t leave the forecourt but that CCTV footage made it look like he was the one who hadn’t paid for the fuel.

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