Thirty-four people who failed to pay a fixed penalty notice (FPN) for littering in Thanet have been taken to court by Thanet District Council. The prosecutions were brought in front of Canterbury Magistrates’ Court on Tuesday 20 February and Tuesday 13 March.
The prosecutions, which were for non payment of FPNs for littering and spitting offences, are a clear signal of the council’s zero tolerance approach and its determination to push for further penalties in the event of non payment.
In addition to the original FPN, all offenders were issued with two further warning letters after they had missed the initial payment deadline. Taking people to court is the last resort and only happens after all communication issued has been ignored.
The council is committed to making Thanet a clean and welcoming environment and recognises the importance of enforcement in tackling litter and making the district a better place to live and visit.
Cllr Rosanna Taylor-Smith, Cabinet Member for Community Safety & Environmental Services commented: “Thanet is a beautiful place and we want to keep it that way. While litter is only dropped by a small number of people, it affects everyone. These prosecutions serve as a reminder that littering is a crime and won’t be tolerated.The message is clear – if FPN’s are unpaid, we will bring prosecutions.”
Of the 21 cases brought before the Magistrate in February, one attended and received a £40 fine as well as being ordered to pay £60 costs and a £30 victim surcharge. Two pleaded guilty by post and were fined £55 and £60 respectively, with both offenders made to pay £60 costs and a £30 victim surcharge each.
The remaining 18 did not attend and were each fined £220 with £120 costs and a victim surcharge of £30.
In March, the further 13 successful convictions for littering in Thanet saw fines of £200 with £120 costs and £50 victim surcharge administered to each offender.