A litterbug who threw a cigarette end on to the pavement before doing a spot of shopping in a 99p store has been ordered by a court to pay more than £400.

Maurice Kimber was spotted by two council Community Officers as he threw the butt on to the ground outside the shop on Gillingham High Street.

He was handed a fixed penalty notice for the offence on 28 July last year.

At the time, Kimber admitted to the Community Officers that he knew throwing his cigarette butt on the floor was wrong and that it was against the law to litter a public place.

But the 64-year-old of Canterbury Street, Gillingham, didn’t pay the Fixed Penalty Notice and ignored all letters from the council so the case went to court on Monday, 16 January.

Now Kimber, who failed to appear at the hearing, has been fined £100 by magistrates in Medway and was also ordered to pay £286 court costs and a £15 victim surcharge.

This is far more than the Fixed Penalty Notice he was first asked to pay of £80, which is reduced to £60 if paid within ten days.

In a separate case held at Medway Magistrates Court on the same day, Michael Hamilton was fined for throwing a cigarette butt outside Greggs Bakery on Chatham High Street on 1 August last year.

Two Community Officers saw Hamilton, from The Tideway, Rochester, throw the butt on to the pavement before walking towards the store.

The 20-year-old was issued with a Fixed Penalty Notice for £80, reduced to £60 if paid within 10 days, but did not pay and did not respond to any letters from the council.

His case then went to court and he was also subsequently fined £100 by magistrates plus £286 court costs and a £15 victim surcharge. Hamilton did not appear at the hearing.

Cllr Mike O’Brien, Portfolio Holder for Community Safety and Customer Contact, said: “Throwing litter in a public place is a thoughtless act that shows a lack of regard for others who live in and use the local area.

“It is ironic that one of these defendants was heading into a 99p store to pick up a bargain and now has such a large fine, but the real message in regards to both these cases is that if you litter and one of our officers spots you the council will prosecute.

“Medway Council spends £3million of public money each year clearing away litter from Medway’s streets.

“Discarded rubbish is unsightly for residents and visitors alike and we would ask people to think of others and use the bins provided for all litter – including cigarette butts – rather than just thoughtlessly throwing rubbish into the street.”

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