Wigan's week in court

The latest round-up of those who has appeared at Wigan magistrates and in the dock at crown court.
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A Wigan 23-year-old is awaiting his fate after admitting to a £5,500 benefit fiddle.

Ryan Cleworth, of Thomas Street, Hindley Green, pleaded guilty to four charges of receiving credits to which he was not entitled between 2019 and 2021 and then failing to take steps to cancel those payments, knowing he didn't deserve them.

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He was released on unconditional bail until he is sentenced by Wigan magistrates on May 17.

Wigan and Leigh courtWigan and Leigh court
Wigan and Leigh court

The courts have seized more than £50,000 in ill-gotten gains from a Wigan drug dealer who stored his cocaine in a coffee tin.

And if Martin Bradshaw doesn't cough up within three months, another year will be added onto his prison sentence.

The 33-year-old of Ashbourne Avenue, Aspull, was last year sentenced to three years and six months in jail at Bolton Crown Court after pleading guilty to dangerous driving, driving without insurance, possession with intent to supply a class A controlled drug and facilitating the acquisition and possession of criminal property.

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He was disqualified from driving for three years and nine months.

The court heard that on Friday June 5 2020, a police officer spotted Bradshaw driving erratically in his Mercedes Benz along Scholes.

They attempted to stop the car but Bradshaw only accelerated, eventually managing to flee the officer.

The car was spotted shortly afterwards parked up on Higher Lane, Aspull and seized by police.

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The following day, officers returned to the compound where the car was being kept and forced entry to it due to intelligence that it was linked to the supply of controlled drugs.

Following a search, bank cards and a coffee tin containing cocaine were seized.

Two burner phones were also discovered and both contained details of drug supply.

On Sunday June 7, Bradshaw attended Wigan police Station and was arrested.

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Following further investigation, it was uncovered that Bradshaw had purchased a static caravan in Blackpool and this was subsequently seized under the Proceeds of Crime Act.

The Mercedes was also seized.

Now, following a Proceeds of Crime hearing at Bolton Crown Court, it has been ruled that Bradshaw had £51,667 in criminal proceeds that could be recovered.

He has three months to pay up.

Failure to do so will see him kept behind bars for another 12 months.

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A Wigan man has pleaded not guilty to charges of kidnap, false imprisonment and assault.

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Dean Braham, 37, formerly of Ratcliffe Street in Springfield, and now of Brewery Lane, Leigh, appeared before a Bolton Crown Court judge to deny accusations that unlawfully and by fraud or force he carried away Dominique Peet, injuriously imprisoning her and assaulting her, causing actual bodily harm.

All the offences are alleged to have taken place on New Year's Eve last year.

Braham has also denied burgling an address in Leyland Gardens, Wigan, during which beer and coconut water were stolen, and possessing an assault rifle, both on March 12 this year.

The trial for kidnap, false imprisonment and assault is due to take place at Bolton on July 24 while the trial over the burglary and offensive weapon has been scheduled for September 11.

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He has pleaded guilty to a charge of threatening behaviour and he will be sentenced for that at the conclusion of the second trial.

Before then he is remanded in custody.

Sentencing of a homeless 21-year-old who stole a collection box for a charity that helps children with life-threatening conditions has been delayed.

Christopher Kelly, of no fixed address, had appeared before Manchester and Salford magistrates to plead guilty to snatching the When You Wish Upon A Star charity box at Wigan North Western railway's station's Express Cafe on March 17 last year.

The hearing was told that it was not known how much money was inside at the time.

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Kelly had been committed to Manchester Crown Court, Minshull Street, for sentencing but that hearing has now been adjourned until May 31 when he will appear with a co-accused.

Before then he is remanded into custody.

A Wigan driver has been convicted of breaking the speed limit by nine miles per hour.

Tinashe Chakwana, 23, of Crawford Avenue, Aspull, had pleaded not guilty to driving a Vauxhall Corsa at 49mph on the A580 East Lancashire Road in Swinton on February 6, 2022, exceeding the 40mph limit.

But he was convicted at Tameside Magistrates’ Court in his absence and must pay a £66 fine and £34 victim surcharge.

His driving licence was endorsed with three penalty points.

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A Wigan man accused of assaulting two people by beating them will stand trial in September.

Dean Lyon, 37, of Oak Avenue, Abram, has pleaded not guilty to attacking the pair at a property in Ince on November 29.

A trial has now been scheduled to take place at Wigan and Leigh Magistrates’ Court on September 11.

Lyon was remanded on bail until then, with conditions not to contact the complainants and to sleep at his home address each night.

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A woman has been given a suspended prison sentence for attacking another woman in a Wigan pub.

Lucy Mullock, 35, from Wigan, had pleaded guilty to assaulting Natalie Walsh, causing actual bodily harm, at the Springfield Hotel, in Springfield, on July 24, 2021.

Wigan magistrates have now imposed a six-week prison sentence, which has been suspended for 12 months.

Mullock must do 15 days of rehabilitation activities within 12 months and pay £150 compensation and £228 in a fine and victim surcharge.

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A Wigan man has admitted mounting a stalking campaign against a woman for more than three months.

Craig Knox, 36, of Wigan Road, Standish, initially denied sending numerous threatening messages and texts between July 27 and November 6, but has now changed his plea to guilty.

He faced a single charge of "a course of conduct that caused Nicola Lane serious alarm or distress, which had a substantial adverse effect on her usual day-to-day activities".

Wigan magistrates sent the case to Bolton Crown Court, where Knox will be sentenced on May 25.

He was remanded into custody until then.

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A Wigan man will stand trial accused of taking a woman against her will, imprisoning and attacking her on New Year's Eve.

Mark Dunn, 42, of Comet Road, Marsh Green, has been charged with using force or fraud to take the woman, detaining her, strangling her and assaulting her, causing actual bodily harm.

The offences are alleged to have happened on December 31.

Due to the seriousness of the allegations, Wigan justices sent the case to be heard at Bolton Crown Court, where Dunn will appear on May 31.

He was remanded on conditional bail until then.

A man has admitted driving dangerously and without insurance - but denies handling stolen goods when he was behind the wheel.

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Benjamin Nuttall, 25, of Ullswater Road, Astley, pleaded guilty to driving a silver Vauxhall Combo van dangerously on Meanley Road, Astley, on April 25 and while he was not insured.

But he pleaded not guilty to handling stolen goods, ie the van, which was worth £6,200.

A trial will be held at Wigan and Leigh Magistrates' Court on October 9 and Nuttall was remanded on conditional bail until then.

An interim driving ban was imposed ahead of sentencing.

A Wigan man who denied using threatening or abusive words or behaviour towards a woman has been found guilty by magistrates.

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Shaun Shipley, 24, of Livingstone Street, Ashton, was sentenced to a 12-month community order with 15 days of rehabilitation activities.

He must pay a £150 fine and £100 compensation.

A woman who denies possessing two class A drugs with intent to supply has been sent for a trial at Bolton Crown Court.

Lisa O'Brien, 48, of Langdale Avenue, Ince, is charged with having diamorphine and crack cocaine on April 21, with intent to supply it to other people.

Wigan magistrates directed that she be tried by a jury, so O'Brien will appear at the crown court on May 31.

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She was remanded on bail until then, with conditions not to enter Wigan except to go to court or see her solicitor and to live at an address in Liverpool.

A shoplifter who stole from the same store twice in four days has now admitted breaching the community order imposed as his punishment.

Jonathan Chappell, 42, of Vulcan Road, Marsh Green, was given a community order by magistrates on February 2 after twice stealing household items worth £100 from a Co-op shop.

But he was brought back before the court after failing to attend two probation appointments in February, which he admitted.

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Wigan justices decided to revoke the order and replace it with a 12-week prison sentence, suspended for 12 months, due to his previous record, breach of court orders and lack of engagement.

Chappell must have drug rehabilitation for six months and attend 15 rehabilitation activity days in the next 12 months.

He was also fined £40 for missing appointments at Coops in August and November last year, as part of supervision requirements after he was released from prison.

A man has admitted failing to take action when £890 was wrongfully credited to his bank account.

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Danny Winstanley, 26, of Bradshaw Street, Whelley, did not take steps to ensure the credit was cancelled when £800.91 and £90 were credited to his account on April 16, 2020.

Wigan magistrates ordered him to pay £85 prosecution costs, a £40 fine and £34 victim surcharge.

A woman has admitted assaulting a police officer by beating him.

Lidia Sojkahudson, 47, of Kermishaw Nook, Tyldesley, attacked PC Sherrington on September 17.

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She was given a 12-month community order with 25 days of rehabilitation activities and a £50 fine.

She must also pay £50 compensation and £199 in prosecution costs and a victim surcharge.

A Wigan woman who admitted causing a serious collision which resulted in an 81-year-old woman suffering life-threatening injuries is now behind bars.

Deborah Cubas De Souza, 27, from Platt Bridge, was jailed for eight months by a judge at Liverpool Crown Court.

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She earlier pleaded guilty to dangerous driving and driving without a licence and insurance.

On the afternoon of Wednesday, April 5, De Souza was driving a black Toyota Yaris on the A50, in the direction of Latchford, Warrington.

At around 12.45pm, the car struck a pedestrian who was crossing Knutsford Road, Latchford. The pedestrian – an 81-year-old woman from Warrington – spent three weeks in hospital receiving treatment after suffering a severe laceration to her head.

She is still recovering from her injuries.

Det Con Lisa Evans-Hill said “Driving is a privilege, not a right, and it comes with great responsibility to act within the rules laid down when you pass your test.

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“In this case, De Souza clearly breached these rules and her driving was totally unacceptable, leaving her victim with injuries that could have been fatal.

“I hope that the sentence handed to De Souza will provide some closure to the victim and her family and I hope it acts as a warning to others – the rules of the road are there for a reason and they apply to everyone.

"They are not just there to protect you but also to protect other motorists and pedestrians.”

In addition to her prison sentence, De Souza was disqualified from driving for two years and four months until she passes an extended test.

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Two Wigan men who arranged to illegally have their dogs’ ears cropped are now behind bars.

Joshua Kwiathawski, 25, of Rose Avenue, Beech Hill, and Jamie Evans 30, of no fixed address, were jailed for 23 weeks and banned from keeping animals for 15 years by Wigan magistrates.

The pair had pleaded guilty to allowing ear cropping to be carried out on their bull-type dogs, named Riga and Ace, and failing to seek veterinary care for their injuries.

The court heard police seized Kwiathawski’s phone on an unrelated offence and found photographs of Ace with cropped ears.

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Two warrants were executed by the RSPCA and police, and a second phone was seized containing messages where the two men spoke about Ace and Riga having their ears cropped.

There were photographs of both dogs as puppies with full ears, as well as images after the procedure.

The court heard Kwiathawski advised Evans to put talc on Riga’s ears, with one voice note saying “Once you've took the scabs off and talced his ears he will look exactly like Ace does on that picture where his ears are dead white and they are up tall and you can hardly see any scabs.

"It just looks like loads of talc on the outsides of his ears. That’s what it will look like bro."

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Evans replied “Sure he’s took this crop too far back on him.”

In a conversation on WhatsApp, Evans asked when he could “post a pic” of Riga, to which Kwiathawski replied “Not for 4-6 weeks bro, no one in your gaff you don’t know.”

Kwiathawski continued “Don’t have anyone in your house or seeing the dog you don’t know, if they see fresh wounds they could report you.

“Only post on your private snapchat mate people who you trust and if anyone asks obvs the dogs imported.”

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Ear cropping is illegal in England, but dogs can still be legally imported into the country having had the procedure overseas.

In a statement to the court, vet Dr Sean Taylor said “In my opinion there is sufficient evidence … that Ace and Riga have both undergone ear cropping procedures.

“Mutilation of the ear pinna for reasons of cosmetic look is prohibited within the RCVS professional code of conduct and should not be carried out by veterinary surgeons within the UK.

“I have not been provided with any evidence to indicate that Ace and Riga had their ears cropped for reasons of medical necessity.

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"In the absence of such evidence it is assumed that these dogs had their ears cropped for cosmetic reasons and in my opinion would have suffered via mechanisms of pain and ear irritation after the cropping procedure for a period of at least five days, possibly longer.”