Tuesday, 26 July 2011

Burgling Metal Detectorist Offers Relic to Pay Back Damage Debt


I thought I'd written about this before, but it seems not (Portsmouth News,'Burglar offers relic to pay back damage debt', Saturday 23 July 2011):

Drunken burglar William Wilson, who caused thousands of pounds of damage by trashing a pub, will pay off his debts with a valuable piece of medieval jewellery he found on the beach. The 29-year-old smashed up Lily Sugars pub in Creek Road, Hayling Island, after spending an evening there drinking and then deciding to go back and burgle it after it had closed. During his sentencing hearing at Portsmouth Crown Court, Wilson offered a bronze and gold Anglo-Saxon bracelet he found while metal detecting on a beach as compensation for the damage caused. The piece has been valued at £3,000 by an expert.

I presume (hope) this means it has been the subject of an inquest and disclaimed as Treasure and now he'll be flogging it off to some collector legally. Over on at least one metal detecting forum I saw today that fellow detectorists are under the impression it was not. The damage to the pub was valued at £6,931, but since he was a history-loving metal detectorist, the judge let him off paying back the rest.

Vignette: I bet having a few beers with Mr Watson at a metal detecting rally is a bundle of laughs.

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