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Beech gone but cost not forgotten

PUBLISHED: 17:50 01 March 2002 | UPDATED: 11:27 03 March 2010

SERIAL sex offender Steven Beech's stay in Suffolk has cost council tax payers at least £6,000 – and the real total could be much higher.

Beech left Suffolk last night after 10 days of being put up in Ipswich police station – he is considered so dangerous that two officers have to guard him day and night.

SERIAL sex offender Steven Beech's stay in Suffolk has cost council tax payers at least £6,000 – and the real total could be much higher.

Beech left Suffolk last night after 10 days of being put up in Ipswich police station – he is considered so dangerous that two officers have to guard him day and night.

The Evening Star has turned the spotlight on Beech and led the calls for him to leave the county.

"He should never have come here, never had the choice," said Star editor Nigel Pickover.

"Now the six officers who had to guard him every day can return to their real job of fighting crime in the town."

Beech arrived in Ipswich after being driven out of Sheffield after details of his 115 previous convictions were revealed.

Assuming that they were constables on the basic rate of pay, they cost £90 an eight-hour shift – that's £540 a day.

That doesn't include the cost of meals, accommodation, heating, or any of the creature comforts he has been enjoying at the police station – their cost will push the total bill up to the £6,000 mark.

Police sources refused to comment on the cost of his stay – and say it will be met out of their general budget.

But his presence in the town has kept two officers off the streets of Ipswich 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

Beech left Suffolk last night. There were reports that he had moved to another police station in the county – but these were denied by police spokesman Steve Henry.

"I can categorically state that Beech is no longer anywhere in Suffolk – although we are not at liberty to say where he has gone to.

"We are just very relieved he is not our immediate problem any more – we can get on with our normal work," he said.

Guarding Beech prevented six officers a day from fighting crime on the streets of Ipswich when there is heightened concern among the public.

Last week, we revealed that 78 motorists had fallen victim to car criminals stealing their vehicles, taking goods from inside or damaging their motors. In the past week, the figure dropped to 51.

Thieves stole goods from 23 vehicles in Ipswich in the past week. The week before, 40 vehicles were targeted. Police have arrested four people in connection with stealing from vehicles – bailing two and charging the other pair.

Vandals damaged 22 vehicles in the last week. The previous week, they targeted 33. A 22-year-old man has been arrested and released on police bail.

Six motor vehicles were stolen by car thieves in the past week. The previous week, five vehicles were taken.


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