Tyne & Wear

Blyth woman jailed for not paying council tax

Northumberland County Council building Image copyright Google
Image caption Northumberland County Council said Gillian Sawyer had persistently failed to pay her council tax

A woman has been jailed for failing to pay her council tax.

Gillian Sawyer owed £2,735 for various periods up to 2010 and had failed to adhere to seven court orders for payment, South East Northumberland Magistrates' Court heard.

Sawyer, 48, of Plessey Road in Blyth, was previously given a suspended sentence for failing to pay and was jailed for 12 days.

Northumberland County Council said prosecution was the only option.

Colin Logan, head of financial and customer services, said: "The council has a duty to its paying residents to take action against those who will not pay.

"The council has no alternative but to continue to bring council tax defaulters to court in order to ensure payment is received for essential local services.

"Whilst sending someone to prison is a rare occurrence and will usually only happen in the worst cases, it can and will happen."

He urged anyone with payment difficulty to contact the council.

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