Six smokers who were caught by litter cops dropping cigarette butts have landed hefty court bills and a criminal record after failing to pay on the spot fines.
None of the five men and one women appeared at Brighton Magistrates Court for their hearing on 12 December, and in each case the charge of littering was proven in their absence.
Each was fined £440, told to pay £350 costs plus a £44 victim surcharge.
The six are:
- Ziad AL-Gewer of Canning Street, Brighton, who was caught on 22 August in Western Road, Brighton
- Lyke Halloran of Harrington Road, Brighton, who was caught on 28 August in Junction Road, Brighton
- Esther Isacc of Brunswick Road, who was caught on 31 August in Western Road, Brighton
- Samuel Stephens of Tisbury Road, Hove, who was caught on 28 August in Junction Road, Brighton
- Adrian Wilson of Upper North Street, who was caught on 28 August in Boundary Road, Portslade
- Zhang Yiheng of Southall Avenue, Brighton, who was caught on 31 August, in Junction Road, Brighton
All the litterbugs gave their details to the council’s environment enforcement officers, who checked their details electronically. When they didn’t pay the £75 fixed penalty notice within 28 days, they were summoned to court for last month’s hearing.
The court gave them until 26 December to pay the fines.
Cllr Gill Mitchell, chair of the council’s environment, transport and sustainability committee, said: “We’re determined to stamp out littering and these convictions show we take this type of crime very seriously.
“We will not sit back and watch our beautiful city become dirty because someone can’t be bothered to find a bin for their cigarette butt or rubbish, or clean up after their dog.
“Nor will we stand aside and let people fly-tipping their unwanted items beside a communal bin, expecting the council to take them away at the expense of other council tax payers.
“We will continue to gather evidence and fine offenders. If they fail or refuse to pay, we will take them to court where they will be handed much bigger fines and a criminal prosecution, as these offenders have found out.”