Fly-tipping husband has sentence reduced

Items dumped by Michael Peter Hutchinson, most recently living at Church Lane, Croft, Skegness, in his ex-wife's front garden. EMN-160403-135430001
Items dumped by Michael Peter Hutchinson, most recently living at Church Lane, Croft, Skegness, in his ex-wife's front garden. EMN-160403-135430001

A Lincolnshire man who was convicted of fly-tipping after leaving property outside his ex-wife’s home today (Friday) had his sentence reduced after winning an appeal.

Michael Hutchinson, 72, left bedding, furniture and other items with the message “Some things you didn’t steal” near the home of his former partner in Jubilee Close, Martin, in June 2014.

Mr Hutchinson, most recently living at Church Lane, Croft, Skegness, pleaded guilty to two counts of fly-tipping on June 14 and 21, 2014, and was ordered to pay more than £2,300 after appearing at Lincoln Magistrates’ Court in January following a prosecution by North Kesteven District Council.

But the amount Mr Hutchinson will have to pay was today reduced to just under £1,300 after he represented himself during an appeal hearing at Lincoln Crown Court.

In reducing the figure Recorder Stuart Sprawson said it was now accepted from photographs of the fly-tipping that some of the items were left on the “curtilage” of Mrs Hutchinson’s home rather than directly on her property.

The Recorder, sitting with two magistrates, also said it was “unacceptable” for the costs of removing the property and bringing the case not to have been broken down for examination by Mr Hutchinson. He also said Mrs Hutchinson had failed to provide an estimate for the value of the property.

Magistrates had fined Mr Hutchinson £625, with costs of £1,229.88, a victim surcharge of £63 and compensation to Mrs Hutchinson of £400, totalling £2,317.88.

But the figures were reduced to a £225 fine, with costs of £850, a victim surcharge of £22.50 and compensation to Mrs Hutchinson of £200, totalling £1297.50.

Recorder Sprawson told Mr Hutchinson: “The figures have been reduced from that imposed. To that extent your appeal has been successful.”

Giving evidence in person, Mr Hutchinson told the hearing many of the items had been thrown out 18 months earlier and had been left in either his greenhouse or garage. He also disputed putting a liquid on his wife’s property, telling the court it was shampoo and conditioner.

Mr Hutchinson also denied a suggestion that he tried to evade contact with North Kesteven District Council, telling the hearing he was staying with relatives.

Before leaving the hearing Mr Hutchinson said: “I would just like to thank the court for listening.”