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Man who refused to wear Covid mask hit with near-£400 court bill

A man who chose not to pay a £100 penalty for not wearing a face covering in a takeaway during the Covid pandemic has picked up a £389 court bill instead.
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Coronavirus mask. Photo: Pixabay

Hiwa Zada, 22, was spotted by a police officer in Rotana in Lincoln Road, Peterborough, on October 14, 2020.

The officer quizzed him over why he was not wearing a facemask as required by coronavirus regulations.

Zada said he had left it at home, Peterborough Magistrates’ Court was told on Monday.

He was asked to step outside and while being issued with a £200 fixed penalty notice, he laughed as a friend went by.

“The pandemic and health risk was high and Mr Zada clearly had no regard for this by the way he was presenting himself,” said prosecutor Paul Brown, who added that the fixed penalty notice is reduced to £100 if paid within 14 days.

“Records show that Mr Zada did not pay and, now we’re in court, costs of £105 are due.”

Zada, who pleaded guilty to entering a relevant place in England without wearing a face covering, was not represented in court.

In mitigation, he said it was the first time he had not worn a mask and he couldn’t afford to pay the FPN as he only received £57 per week. He added that he had told a social worker who replied ‘leave it with me’.

Zada, of Henry Street, was fined £250 and ordered to pay £105 costs and £34 victim surcharge.