A Dumbarton woman had her bank account frozen when she failed to pay a court fine for more than six months.

The woman owed £300 after being fined at Dumbarton JP Court for keeping an unlicensed vehicle.

When she repeatedly ignored warning letters, the Scottish Courts and Tribunals Service (SCTS) froze her cash and she quickly paid up.

The case was highlighted when the service published its 40th quarterly fines report – marking a decade of the official publication – and revealed three year collection rates for both sheriff and JP courts have increased to 90 per cent.

Arresting earnings and freezing bank accounts are among a number of measures available to the SCTS for recovering unpaid fines.

Other enforcement measures include arresting people travelling through ports or airports, taking money directly from benefits or clamping vehicles.

Drivers also have to pay a clamping charge and mounting daily fees if a clamped car is taken into storage.

Vehicles are ultimately scrapped or sold off if they do not settle their fines.

The collection rates remain consistently strong and show that 90 per cent of the value of Sheriff Court fines and JP Court fines imposed during the three-year period between 2015/16 and 2017/18 has either been paid or is on track to be paid.

That's a rise of one percentage point compared with the figure at January 21, 2019.

An example of how rigorous the fines enforcement unit is in pursuing non-payers was when a Glasgow man who had failed to pay a fine for motoring offences, including drink driving, was arrested at the airport as he was leaving to emigrate to Australia.

David Fraser, SCTS chief operations officer, said: “It is very unwise not to pay a fine or not to engage with an enforcement officer if someone is having difficulty paying.

"It can lead to having a vehicle clamped or being arrested at an airport as the recent detention at Glasgow Airport shows.

"With our national dedicated team of fines enforcement officers, non-payment of a fine or non-engagement is simply not an option.”