JohnCollins: "If Mr Torrens hadn't kept a copy of the software, why was he asking to crack it?"
His original post was contradictory about whether he had the software or not:
"...I am left having paid for VA and not having it working (no unlock code)."
"However - I now have the right (which could almost cerainly be justified in court) to crack the software myself (except I have returned the CD etc to VA)."
He then goes on to inquire about suitable tools, although that in itself doesn't say anything specific about him having the software or not. I haven't trawled that much of the thread to discover the latest, mostly because it involves wading through the usual off-topic comp.sys.acorn.* drivel.
Sadly, even previously-legitimate activities related to reverse engineering and fair use are now no longer permitted by law, so Mr Torrens' "right [...] to crack the software" may be more curtailed than he imagines.
Even if he has seen an element of sense and deleted any copies he may have, in order to resolve various ambiguities (is having an unusable copy of a program the same as having a usable one?), what recourse does he have? In this kind of licensing regime, companies can just refuse to accept returns or to give refunds, claiming that the goods cannot or have not been returned. How does that jive with consumer law?