TV detector van’s truth ray

A piece in today’s Times:

With their licence fee reimposed, some over-75s may decide to risk a visit from the feared TV detector van. But are the vans less effective than people imagine? The triviamonger Mark Mason tells me of an inspector who stopped a man as he was leaving home. The gentlemen told them he had a licence and where it was. But he was late for a meeting and asked if they could return in an hour when his wife would be home. An hour later the lady answered the door. “Can I see your TV licence?” the inspector asked. “I understand it’s in the chest of drawers, third drawer down, in the blue folder.” The woman was stunned. “Crikey,” she said. “Those vans really are powerful aren’t they?”

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