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Thanks for your question.
I'm afraid that under the Rehabilitation of Offenders Act 1974 convictions for which a custodial sentence of over 2 1/2 years were received never become spent. It's a pretty draconian treatment unfortunately.
Given that you did not declare it when specifically asked then this will be seen as a dishonest answer by the employer and dishonesty is a conduct issue for which they are probably entitled to treat as gross misconduct to dismiss you.
For future reference, It is unclear whether an employee would have to volunteer the information if the employee was not specifically asked. So I would probably keep quiet unless asked in other job applications.
You have my sympathies; it sounds as if you have genuinely rehabilitated yourself and I see that as a credit to you. I wish you the best of luck in your future applications.
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That relates to an amendment made by Criminal Justice and Public Order Act 1994 with regard to probation. I'm afraid that it does not alter your position.
There is useful information on your rights here:-
You will note that traffic wardens are in fact one of the exceptions to the ROA which require you to disclose all spent and unspent convictions.
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