Jail for man who stole power from lamppost

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A SCRAP dealer was jailed yesterday after being found guilty of diverting electricity from a lamppost to supply his house and business.

Ian Tordoff, 44, of Wakefield, West Yorkshire, who denied using electricity illegally between 1 June 1996 and 21 March 1997 and damaging property belonging to Yorkshire Electricity, was sentenced to four months at Leeds Crown Court following a four-day trial.

Yunus Valli, prosecuting, told the court an illegal connection was found at the base of a lamppost outside Tordoff's property with a cable leading into the premises.

Engineers from Yorkshire Electricity said that whoever had connected the electricity supply to the lamppost had taken a considerable risk. Tordoff said he had no knowledge of the illegal connection and claimed he used generators to power the home he had lived at for eight years.

Passing sentence, Assistant Recorder Jennifer Kershaw QC, told Tordoff that stealing electricity was a serious offence and the connection he had made to the lamppost had put others at serious risk.

Tordoff also received a three-month jail sentence, to run concurrently, for the damage offence.

Scott Wilson, defending, said his client was a hard-workingman seeking to provide for his family. He said less than pounds 1,000-worth of electricity was involved. No order for compensation was made.