Council takes litter bug to court

28 November 2017

A Chester litter bug has been ordered to pay fines totalling £170 after being prosecuted for littering by Cheshire West and Chester Council.

During an anti-littering patrol, Council enforcement officers issued a fixed penalty notice (FPN) to the defendant for dropping a cigarette butt in Princess Street, Chester.

The initial penalty is £50 if paid within seven days, after which it rises to £75 and must be paid within 14 days. Thomas Cooke (age 40) of Glyn Garth, Blacon, Chester was prosecuted last week for failing to pay the FPN.

On Friday, 23 November Chester Magistrates’ Court ordered Cooke to pay a total of £170 consisting of a fine of £60 for the littering offence, costs of £80 and a victim surcharge of £30.

The defendant entered a guilty plea when CCTV footage of the offence was shown to the court.

As well as the environmental impact of making our streets look dirty and untidy, it costs the Council almost £600,000 a year to clear litter in the Northwich, Ellesmere Port and Chester areas.

The Council’s Cabinet Member for Environment, Councillor Karen Shore said: “Littering is always considered to be one of the most important issues to our residents.  Our Street Care Pledge sets out our commitment to maintain clean and tidy streets across the borough.  We had no option but to issue court proceedings against this person when he refused to pay the initial fine.

“This follows on from many successful prosecutions earlier this year.  The message is simple - anyone caught dropping litter and who doesn’t pay their fine will be taken to court and prosecuted.”

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