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Taxi fare-dodger jailed for four months

A Sandys man has been jailed for four months for dodging a $68 taxi fare.

Appearing in Magistrates’ Court yesterday, Stevon Swan-Richardson, 22, admitted dishonestly making off without paying the fare in Sandys on September 9.

Prosecutor Maria Sofianos told the court that a taxi had been dispatched to Devonshire to collect three men, who requested the taxi stop at Ice Queen before dropping one of the men off on Ord Road.

The other two requested to be taken to Spring Benny Road in Sandys, where the defendant told the driver he and the other man would have to fetch the money to pay the $68 fare.

The driver asked one of the men to stay behind but he started banging on the door and got out of the taxi.

Both men got away and the driver stopped at Ice Queen to pick up the CCTV footage, which led to the identification of Swan-Richardson.

In court, Swan-Richardson, who has previous convictions for dishonesty offences, said he did not pay the fare because the taxi driver had allegedly been “very disrespectful”.

Magistrate Khamisi Tokunbo said this did not justify what had taken place and handed Swan-Richardson a four-month prison term.

Swan-Richardson was also remanded into custody on a separate matter.

He was charged alongside Joel Smith, 18, of Sandys, with entering a Southampton residence and stealing two Louis Vuitton wallets and a handbag of the same make on September 8. The court heard the items were worth $3,750.

Alternatively, they were both charged with dishonestly receiving those goods — knowing or believing them to be stolen — in Paget on September 14.

Swan-Richardson and Mr Smith denied both charges and also pleaded not guilty to taking a motorcycle without consent on the same date.

Mr Smith furthermore pleaded not guilty to dangerous driving, failing to stop for police, the fraudulent use of documents and having no driver’s licence.

Mr Tokunbo granted Mr Smith $5,000 bail with a like surety on the condition that he abide by a curfew and report to police three times a week.

Swan-Richardson was remanded into custody and a trial date for the alleged burglary was set for November 17.

A separate trial date for the other matter was set for October 28.

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