A man who bought a motorbike from an online marketplace has been convicted of handling stolen goods.

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Simon Arthurton, 39, of Robin Hood Road, Tuckswood, had bought the Kawasaki off-road motorbike after a friend of his son’s saw an advert on internet site Gumtree.

The bike, however, had been reported stolen by Ryan Keen.

Arthurton denied any knowledge that the bike had been stolen, but was found guilty of receiving stolen goods at Norwich Magistrates’ Court yesterday.

During the trial, the court heard how Mr Keen had reported the bike stolen in the early hours of July 6 last year after it was taken from outside his friend’s house.

He attended the recovery centre on July 18 with PC Simon Gooch and, despite the fact that his black and green motorbike had been re-sprayed sparkly purple, instantly recognised it.

Giving evidence, Mr Keen said: “I had spent four hours cleaning it on the day it got stolen. There were lots of markings I had made or noticed during my ownership, and the markings on this bike were exactly the same and the scratches were exactly the same.”

The court heard how the bike’s frame number had been partially filed off, making it unidentifiable, and it had been spray-painted black before Arthurton sprayed it purple. It was heard how Arthurton would not reveal from whom he bought the bike and could not find the advert on Gumtree to show to the police.

In his defence, Arthurton said: “I bought the bike in good faith. When I bought it at the time, I didn’t believe it was stolen.

“I sprayed it purple because my daughter loves purple. I don’t have any documents, off-road bikes don’t have any documentation.”

Arthurton was made subject to a 12-month community order including 160 hours of unpaid work. He was also ordered to pay £300 in compensation and £60 court costs. Convicting him, district judge Peter Veits said: “There’s no reason to doubt you were buying the bike for your children to use off-road, but my concern is over the evidence of the purchase. You either knew it was stolen or closed off your mind to it by not making enquiries.”

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