Tyne & Wear

Carlisle 'career beggars' from Glasgow removed by police

Hands, sign and money cup belonging to a homeless man Image copyright Getty Images
Image caption The relatively smaller begging problem in Carlisle created a "hole in the market"

"Career beggars" have been travelling across the Scottish border from Glasgow to "work" in Carlisle, Cumbria Police has said.

They came to the English city because Scottish law allowed beggars there to be moved on more quickly.

In the past three months Cumbria police sent six people who had been pretending to be homeless back home.

Sgt Scott Adams said they had been begging as "a way of life" rather than being "actually in need".

"We don't generally in Carlisle have much of an issue with homelessness and begging," he said.

"It's a hole in the market if you like."

Punishment deterrent

He said the force helped people who were genuinely in need, including those from outside the city.

But a new procedure has been introduced to fine repeatedly aggressive beggars or take them to court.

The cross-border problem had reduced "now they've seen there's a punishment", said Sgt Adams.

Of those returned to Glasgow, some had been passed on to British Transport Police for not buying train tickets.

They had provided addresses and the force did not believe they were in genuine need.

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