A MASKED quad bike rider drove towards a speed camera van, slammed the window shut and purposely obscured its view of the road.

Daniel Ashford, of Greenlea, Elwick Village, Hartlepool, was yesterday, Wednesday, convicted of a public order offence, criminal damage, no insurance and obstructing a designated person, at Teesside Magistrates Court.

Cleveland Polcie said: "On September 7 this year, Daniel attacked a Cleveland Police camera safety van on Easington Road in Hartlepool at around 12.20pm.

"He drove recklessly on a quad bike, with his face purposely covered, towards the van, and obstructed the operator by slamming shut the window and standing in front of the camera, preventing speed detection of motorists.

"He was verbally abusive towards the camera operator and continued to ride recklessly on a quad bike."

The spokesperson said that inquiries led by the motorcycle section resulted in Mr Ashford, who had tried to conceal his face from the camera, being identified.

They added: “The outcome today sends a strong message to anyone who feels it is acceptable to intimidate and cause distress to camera operators and obstruct them in their duties. This will not be tolerated and Daniel Ashford has now been convicted and fined a total of £633 with additional costs of £50 compensation, £63 surcharge and £85 court costs. His driving licence was also endorsed with six penalty points.

"Let this stand as a warning to anyone else who thinks this type of behaviour is acceptable.”