The amount of littering fines issued in England was more than 60,000 last year a Freedom of Information request has found. 

The rise in the number of offences has been blamed on private company Xfor being employed to use ex-soldiers to issue fines.

The Telegraph report:

Figures show that almost 64,000 littering fines were issued by covert patrols in England last year, a 90-fold increase in 15 years.

An investigation found that on-the-spot fines of up to £80 were handed out for a range of offences including dropping bank cards, nut shells, cigarette butts and pens.

Critics questioned whether councils were using “private police forces” as a cash cow following claims that pedestrians were being targeted for trivial offences.

You can read the full story here.

I am a journalist and author. I am a staff writer at the UK edition of WIRED magazine and in 2015 my book, Freedom of Information: A Practical Guide for UK Journalists, was published. I created FOI Directory in 2012.