A MAN mugged his ex-girlfriend in the street and ran off yelling: "Ha, ha, you've been taxed."

Adam Eastwood stole the woman's mobile phone after the pair had argued near her Middlesbrough home.

Eastwood was banned from going near his former partner after an earlier assault, Teesside Crown Court heard.

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The 34-year-old was jailed for eight months after he admitted robbery and breaching a restraining order.

Duncan McReddie, mitigating, handed Judge George Moorhouse a letter from the victim, which described the case as "a mountain being made of a mole-hill".

Mr McReddie told the judge: "That gives a general flavour of the nature of the relationship."

Eastwood, of Stanmore Avenue, Middlesbrough, said he had been drinking at his sister's home before the incident last December.

As he snatched the phone, the victim fell to the ground and suffered a grazed knee, said prosecutor Rachel Masters.

The court heard how the father-of-two has a criminal record containing 41 offences, including several breaches of restraint orders.