Bailiffs are exposed on tv

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SHOCKING footage of bullying bailiffs used by Wigan Council is to be shown on TV tonight.

Exposure – a current affairs programme which puts the spotlight on various hard hitting issues – shows undercover footage of the lengths bailiffs from Rossendales Collect go to in order to claim money from millions of householders and car owners each year.

The show asks whether the voluntary guidelines that bailiffs are meant to follow are enough to protect the public as it is thought it shows the rough handling and brutal tactics shown by the bailiffs. Details are still under wraps, but a source close to the programme did hint that bailiffs working in Wigan were featured heavily.

While a spokesman from Wigan Council could not fully comment until he had seen the footage, he did admit that the Metro has used and still uses the firm to collect council tax and business rates.

He added that it was standard procedure for councils and most other companies to use bailiffs to claim back money or property owed.

Rossendales Collect, which was formed in 2004, has more than 300 clients and is used by a large number of councils and even has positive testimonials on its website.

A spokesman was unable to give a full explanation until he had seen the programme, but did state that the company was leading a campaign for proper legislation to be introduced and is working with the Ministry of Justice on this.

Its website also offers the following mission statement: “We are highly experienced in both the public and private sectors and by adopting a consultative approach to the recoveries process, we are able to maintain successful partnerships with our clients.

“We are committed to taking a fair, sensitive and ethical approach to debt recovery.

“We are fully compliant with the CSA Code of Practice, OFT Debt Collection Guidance, Data Protection Legislation and all other regulatory requirements.

“All of our processes and procedures exceed the standard required.”

Catch Exposure on ITV tonight 10.35pm until 11.35pm.