Theft accused finally appears in court... after seven-year holiday

A view of Gran Canaria, the island where Paul Waterhouse was staying.
A view of Gran Canaria, the island where Paul Waterhouse was staying.
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A man due to appear at the crown court has finally made an appearance – more than seven years late.

Paul Waterhouse had been committed to the higher court by Blackpool magistrates for offences of theft and causing the wasteful employment of police.

Before he was due to appear at Preston Crown Court in April 2006 he went on holiday with his wife to Gran Canaria and decided to stay there.

The 65-year-old man appeared at the crown court where he admitted failing to answer his bail on April 26, 2006.

His barrister Jonathan Lally told the court that before that date, the defendant had been on holiday to Gran Canaria with his wife and he “simply decided to stay”.

Mr Lally explained: “He wasn’t aware when he left this country what date he was due to attend at the crown court.

“In effect, he closed his mind off to the fact he was due here.”

He went on to be arrested.

The case has been adjourned to September 26 for sentencing.

Waterhouse was remanded in custody to that date while a background report is prepared on him by the probation service.

Judge Anthony Lancaster told him “The judge will need background information about the offence itself and what you have been doing since.

“Because you have been away for so long you will be remanded in custody, otherwise,

“I don’t believe you would turn up for your sentence”.

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