Ilford litterbug fined hundreds of pounds for dropping cigarette butt in Barking street

File photo by Tomasz Sienicki

File photo by Tomasz Sienicki - Credit: Archant

A litterbug is now more than £500 worse off after dropping a cigarette butt in Barking town centre – despite being right by a bin.

Ana Simao of Kingston Road, Ilford, left her fag end on the pavement outside a sandwich shop on Station Parade – but had been spotted by an enforcement officer, who slapped her with an on-the-spot fine of £75.

The officer explained to Ms Simao that she had committed the criminal offence of littering, which is upon conviction with a fine of up to £2,500 and a criminal record.

If she paid the £75 fine within 14 days, though, there would be no further action.

However, the smoker didn’t cough up, despite repeated letters to both her work and home addresses.

Ms Simao was summonsed to appear at Barkingside Magistrates’ court on February 17 but didn’t turn up.

Now she has been ordered to pay a fine of £220, costs of £308 and a victim surcharge of £30 – a total of £558 – and has been given 28 days to make the payment.

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Cllr Laila Butt, cabinet member for enforcement and community safety, said: “I do hope this sends a very clear message that whether you work in, visit or live in our borough you must have a sense of civic pride – you cannot turn our streets or public spaces into an ashtray or worse and hope to get away with it.

“What makes this particular offence worse is that there are a number of public bins she could have used right in front of the location.”

She added: “Let this be a very clear warning that we will continue to clamp down hard on all grime crime. There is no place for this kind of behaviour in Barking and Dagenham.”