A Monkton man missed his trial because he believed he had already admitted leaving a taxi without paying.

Macauley Dennis Richard Breen, of Colley Court, appeared at Haverfordwest magistrates court on Monday, September 30.

Breen, 23, had previously been found guilty in his absence of dishonestly making off without paying a £27.80 fare, after taking a taxi from Haverfordwest to Pembroke on December 27.

Prosecutor Linda Baker said: “He said he wanted to be dropped off at the service station, he left the taxi and went into the garage and then made off without paying the £27 taxi fee.”

The court heard Breen was on post-sentence supervision, but had “stayed out of trouble” since the offence, and was keen to start work.

Mike Kelleher, defending, said: “Mr Breen had been out in Haverfordwest and was the worse for wear. He had a taxi back to Pembroke and argued wit the driver over the fare.

“He went into the garage, came out and there was another argument. He left the scene but there was no doubt who he was.”

“It’s an offence without any great planning. It was spur of the moment stuff while he was intoxicated.

Mr Kelleher added that Breen had not appeared at his trial as he was “firmly of the view that he had already been dealt with for this matter”, and thought the hearing was on a different date.

“He thought that he had already pleaded guilty.”

“He was not denying that this had happened and accepted that he was at fault for it.”

Magistrates fined Breen £80 and ordered him to pay £157.80 in costs, compensation and a surcharge.

The chairman of the bench said: “I hope you get a job and I hope that this is the last time we see you in court.”