Detectorist left to pay the price after not declaring his findings

Started by gash, June 25, 2016, 09:08:46 am

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A man who found a gold Bronze Age Penannular ring while he was illegally metal detecting on private property in 2014 has been sentenced after being found guilty of theft.

Ricky Smith, 34, of Cranleigh, was ordered to pay £530, including a £300 fine, a £30 victim surcharge and £200 costs when he appeared at West Surrey Magistrate's Court in Guildford on Friday (17 June). This fine was later reduced due to his means.

The incident first came to light after Smith first contacted Surrey County Council's Finds Liaison department on 17 September 2014, stating that he had found a ring similar to one found in a recent hoard in Gloucester. He was told that it was a legal obligation under section 8 of the Treasure Act 1996 to report such a find to the Coroner. Smith said that he was a detectorist of 11 years and was "in it for the money".

Smith also said that he had found the ring on a bridleway within a private estate in Cranleigh. Three days later he called again to say that he was going to report the find to Sussex.

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