Farmer sentenced for tractor rampage


A farmer from Ware in Hertfordshire has been sentenced today, 4 July, at Luton Crown Court for dangerous driving and criminal damage.

Paul Nicholas Newton, 60, of Ware Park Farm, Ware, was convicted at the end of May of one count of dangerous driving and three counts of criminal damage, after he went on a drink-fuelled rampage in his tractor, damaging three cars in September last year.

CPS case lawyer, Jeremy Taylor, said:

'Paul Newton, of Ware Park Farm, intentionally damaged three cars with his tractor during the evening of 5 September, 2010, at Thundridge, after he had been drinking in a local pub. The occupants of the cars were visiting a church nearby when they met Newton in his tractor, whereupon he launched his rampage in Cold Christmas Lane, even chasing and damaging one car in a field. The incident resulted in two of the three cars being 'written off' by the insurance companies.

'Newton then sought to cover up his actions and denied the offences, claiming his tractor had been stolen, but instead was thoroughly investigated by police, robustly prosecuted by the CPS and unanimously convicted by the jury, after they heard the strong forensic evidence and witness accounts during the trial.'

'Today the defendant was brought back before the courts and given a four-month prison sentence suspended for 12 months, with a three-month curfew. He was banned from driving for a year and will have to take an extended re-test. Furthermore, he was also ordered to pay compensation of almost £11,500, including £4,872 costs.

'Thankfully no one was injured in this incident, but they so easily could have been. Newton will now pay the price for his crimes.'