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Scrawling pest has his card marked.

A MAN who went on a graffiti spree with a 29p marker pen has been branded a nuisance by magistrates.

Philip Kew's scrawls sparked a police hunt which only ended when a fellow vandal told police.

Using spray paint and the marker pen, the 20-year-old daubed his tag Buck on vehicles, road signs and utility boxes.

Gateshead magistrates heard that he carried out the spate of damage because he was bored. Kew's tag appeared around the Leam Lane and Wardley areas of Gateshead in 2008 and again last year, sparking a police plea for information.

A tip-off eventually led officers to Kew, of Evanlade, Leam Lane, who admitted putting his scrawl on numerous cars, signs and electricity boxes belonging to Gateshead Council, Nexus and Northern Electric.

Unemployed Kew pleaded guilty to three counts of criminal damage when he appeared before Gateshead magistrates and asked for nine other offences to be taken into consideration.

Magistrates handed him a 12-month community order with 80 hours of unpaid work and told him they hoped he would be made to clean up similar graffiti messes to the one he created. He must also pay pounds 150 compensation.

"This graffiti caused an awful mess," Brian Malloy, chairman of the bench told Kew. "Some graffiti is quite artful, but this is terrible."
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Title Annotation:Features
Publication:The Journal (Newcastle, England)
Date:May 4, 2010
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