Sussex

Brighton man Dirk Duputell sentenced under new anti-squatting legislation

People outside London Road property
Image caption Magistrates were shown a police video of the flat in Brighton

A squatter has been found guilty and sentenced under new anti-squatting legislation.

Dirk Duputell, 30, of no fixed abode, was convicted of squatting following a trial at Brighton Magistrates' Court.

He was given a 12 month community order and ordered to undertake 40 hours of unpaid work.

Magistrates were shown a police video which the prosecution claimed showed signs of people living in the flat at 77a London Road in Brighton.

Duputell was also told to pay £250 costs.

Alistair Cannell and Tobias Sedwick, both 23 and of no fixed abode, who also went on trial under the new legislation, were last month told they had "no case to answer".

Until September, squatting was treated as a civil matter.

The maximum penalty for the new criminal offence is six months in jail, a £5,000 fine, or both.

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