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A DRIVER who had to leave his car stuck in a snow-filled ditch returned to find a farmer had WRECKED it with a fork-lift truck.
Dan Neal put an explanatory note on the windscreen of his neat Citroen C2 after it slid off the road on his way home from work last Friday, causing a few minor scratches.
But when he went to collect it the next day, the £3,000 motor was a mangled heap.
Windows were smashed, the roof had a hole punched through it, the windscreen was shattered and a wing mirror was missing.
Farmer Edward Gilbert had lifted up the car to a nearby barn by spearing it with his fork-lift.
When Dan, 24, challenged him about the damage, Mr Gilbert said Dan owed HIM £250 for minor damage to a fence.
Car-tastrophe ... the farmer had speared Dan's Citroen with his fork-lift
Dan said: “The farmer said ‘I’ve confiscated your car because I’m sick of people driving into my fence’.
"He was very matter-of-fact about it. He even said I owed him £250 - I couldn’t believe what he was saying.”
The car has been taken away as scrap - and Dan is stuck at home in the isolated Leicestershire village of Fleckney with no transport to get to his job with British Gas customer services.
He added: “The police have told me they don’t want to get involved as they can’t prove that the farmer acted maliciously.
"My insurers have said they’ll get in touch with the farmer to try to sort it out and I’m left without a car living in the middle of nowhere.”
Even the private registation plate was destroyed, that is a waste of a cherished plate.
Mr Gilbert, 38, defended his actions and said he was “within his rights” to remove the car.
He said: ”It had damaged the fence and there were sheep in the field and a danger they could escape. It was dark and snowing and I couldn’t see any sign in the car. The forklift was the only way I had of lifting it off the fence.”
He added: “We get fed-up with people going through the hedges and abandoning their cars.
"If it had been a £50,000 Bentley I might have left it in the ditch.
"But as it is I’m waiting to send him my personal invoice for the damage