£235 court bill for Carlisle 'beggar' given just £1.04
A beggar seen taking £1.04 from two well wishers in Carlisle city centre has been hit with fines and court costs of £235.
Malcolm John Nicholson, 32, of Lightfoot Drive, Harraby, who failed to turn up for his case today at the city's Rickergate magistrates' court, was found guilty of a single offence of begging.
The court heard how a police officer spotted the defendant sitting beneath the Citadel Court Archway near the city's railway station on Msrch 28.
The officer saw him accept a pound coin from a passing woman and then two 2p coins from a passing man.
Nicholson denied begging, saying that the man and the woman simply gave him the cash. The woman who gave him the £1 coin said he looked homeless and in need.
Finding the case proved, magistrates imposed a £120 fine, a £30 victim surcharge and £85 prosecution costs.