Shropshire Star

Man smashed £12,000 hotel windows after five nights on the street 'to get authorities' attention'

An asylum seeker who had been living on the streets of Telford and eating food from bins to survive because immigration officials would not take responsibility for an administrative error smashed expensive hotel windows "to bring his plight to the attention of the authorities".

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The Whitehouse Hotel in Wellington

Mohamd Jayrvand, 21, picked up a metal pole and deliberately broke several windows at the Whitehouse Hotel in Wellington on Wednesday. He had arrived in Wellington days earlier having been promised accommodation there by immigration authorities - but on arrival at the hotel he was told he couldn't stay there after all because his reference number "wasn't linked" to him after someone had "written it down wrongly".

After several days of fruitless phone calls to the authorities and nights spent sleeping on a bench near the hotel, taking food from out of bins, Jayrvand deliberately damaged the windows in the hopes of being sent to prison to get shelter and food, Kidderminster Magistrates Court heard.

Prosecutor Aleigha Adams told the court on Thursday: "The defendant had become frustrated and he's used a metal pole to smash approximately 13 double-glazed windows. The estimated cost is £12,000

"[In a police interview] he said there had been a problem with his reference number not being linked to him.

"There has been some difficulty with housing him at the hotel; he had been in contact with various agencies - they were both passing him off to each other.

"He felt like he had to do something wrong to get the attention that he needed.

"He described grabbing a metal pole and smashing the windows at the hotel, and waiting for the police to arrive.

"He said: 'I called the police, because I smashed the windows.'"

Jayrvand was arrested, interviewed and charged with criminal damage. He pleaded guilty at the first available opportunity.

Speaking for Jayrvand in court, John McMillan told magistrates how the man had come to be living on the streets of Telford.

"Mr Jayrvand spent 40 days crossing Europe; he came across in a boat and he has been in the UK for about 10 days.

"When he arrived he surrendered to the immigration authorities, and he was processed and told that he would be considered as an asylum seeker but that would take some time to resolve.

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