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Prisoner Leon Hoyes admits criminal damage after £70,000 chapel roof protest at HMP Rochester

A prisoner caused £70,000 of damage when he clambered on top of a chapel and chucked slates at parked cars below.

Leon Hoyes' protest happened at HMP Rochester on June 16, 2017.

In total the value of damage to the place of worship, a vehicle and an airbag was estimated at £70,725.

Leon Hoyes admitted criminal damage (7139333)
Leon Hoyes admitted criminal damage (7139333)

Now the 26-year-old, whose Facebook page lists his profession as 'former wing cleaner at Her Majesty's Prison Service', faces an extension to his sentence.

Initially Hoyes, a convicted drug dealer and armed robber who's been in and out of prison since his youth, had got fed up of waiting for his video link hearing to begin at Medway Magistrates' Court.

The disgruntled lag, originally from Abbots Langley, Hertfordshire, returned to his cell and could only be coaxed out again when threatened with the prospect of a four-hour coach trip to Chatham from HMP Dovegate, in Staffordshire.

When back in front of the camera well-spoken Hoyes, who was unrepresented at the brief hearing, pleaded guilty to criminal damage.

David Fairest, prosecuting, told the court: "Because the damage is over £10k this case should be sent to crown court. Mr Hoyes is on technical unconditional bail."

Chairman of the bench Colin Smith told Hoyes: "This is a matter we can't deal with here due to the scale of the damage so it must be sent to crown court."

When asked if he understood Hoyes responded: "I'm all good."

He'll be sentenced at Maidstone Crown Court on a date to be set. His unconditional bail was extended.

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