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Woodgate & Clark Ltd, of West Malling, and private investigators Daniel Summers and Adam John Spears in court for data protection laws breach

A West Malling insurance company has been charged with paying private detectives to obtain personal data.

Woodgate & Clark Ltd, of King Street, is accused of four counts of obtaining or disclosing personal data or information between January and March 2005.

Its joint managing director Michael Woodgate, of the same address, and director of technical delivery Colom Tudball, of Farriers Walk, Kingsnorth, face the same charges.

People were unable to use their phones. Image: Thinkstock
People were unable to use their phones. Image: Thinkstock

Daniel Summers, 37, of Cardiff and Adam John Spears, 76, of Pleasance Road North, Lydd On Sea, face the same charges and two charges of selling personal data.

Summers and Spears were allegedly private investigators employed by Woodgate & Clark to obtain information.

The charges have been brought by the Information Commissioner's Office (ICO).

A spokesman said: "Woodgate & Clark denies all the charges brought by the ICO relating to an isolated event said to have taken place over a decade ago.

"As one of the UK’s leading providers of claims solutions, operating with integrity has always been a core business value. While we are obviously disappointed that the ICO has chosen to proceed with this case, we look forward to defending ourselves and fully expect a positive outcome."

The company has 15 offices across the UK and has a net worth of £3.6million.

Woodgate, Tudball and the company denied the charges during a brief hearing at Sevenoaks Magistrates' Court yesterday.

Summers and Spears entered no pleas.

All the defendants were released on unconditional bail to attend Maidstone Crown Court on Tuesday, October 25.

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