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Convicted criminal was right not to wear community payback vest

PUBLISHED: 12:29 05 May 2009 | UPDATED: 09:20 06 July 2010

Kane Beales.

Kane Beales.

A convicted criminal has been told by a judge this morning that he was right not to wear a high visibility jacket while he carried out unpaid work.

Kane Beales had objected to wearing the orange community payback vest after he was asked to put one on by the Norfolk Probation Service as part of his punishment for possessing a flick knife and a knuckle duster.

A community payback jacket.

A convicted criminal has been told by a judge this morning that he was right not to wear a high visibility jacket while he carried out unpaid work.

Kane Beales had objected to wearing the orange community payback vest after he was asked to put one on by the Norfolk Probation Service as part of his punishment for possessing a flick knife and a knuckle duster.

Beales of Finisterre Rise, Caister, said he would have felt embarrassed and humiliated if he had to don the vest.

This morning the 19-year-old was found not guilty of failing to comply with his 220 unpaid work community work order.

Beales had been told he had to wear a jacket when he went out with a group of offenders to clear the grounds of a church on February 18 by Yarmouth probation office.

Today Yarmouth Magistrates Court heard the payback jackets were part of a new government initiative designed to show the public that justice is being done.

However District Judge Philip Browning said Beales had a reasonable excuse not to wear the jacket as the payback scheme had been introduced after he started his unpaid work order and that he had not been informed beforehand he had to wear one on February 18.

The Norfolk Probation Service has now said that Beales will have to wear a payback jacket as he carries out further unpaid work agreement.

Beales was found guilty of breaching of breaching his community order by failing to attend a session on February 11. Judge Browning added an extra month suspension to Beales' existing 18 week prison sentence, suspended for 12 months.

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