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Last Updated: Monday, 14 January 2008, 17:14 GMT
Jailed lotto winner loses appeal
Leah Sumray - Cornish lottery winner
Leah Sumray went on holiday with her family
A 1m lottery winner from Cornwall who was jailed after going on holiday instead of giving evidence in court has failed to have her sentence overturned.

Leah Sumray, 21, a former chip shop worker from St Ives, ignored a witness summons to testify in an assault trial at Truro Crown Court.

She was jailed for 14 days for contempt of court. Her lawyer argued there had been a "misinterpretation" of the law.

The appeal was considered and refused by Judge Christopher Elwen.

Sumray went on the 2,000 family holiday on 2 January.

She had been due to give evidence for the prosecution in the trial of a man on assault charges on 7 January, which went ahead without her evidence.

The judge said her evidence could have had a significant bearing on the outcome of the case.

'Hurried justice'

At the conclusion of the trial, the prosecution applied for a warrant and Sumray was arrested last Wednesday at Bristol Airport when she returned from Fuerteventura.

Sentencing, Judge Christopher Elwen told her "this was a flagrant and wilful contempt of court for which there was no excuse whatsoever".

She was jailed and ordered to pay 200 costs.

Her lawyer, Giovanni Di Stefano, sent an appeal letter to Judge Elwen arguing that Sumray booked the holiday before she knew the trial date, was given no time to prepare her case when she returned, and there was a misinterpretation of the law in her case.

He said: "Hurried justice is no justice."

Sumray was working in the Dolphin Fish and Chip Bar in St Ives, earning 4.60 an hour, at the time of her National Lottery win in October last year.



SEE ALSO
Court-miss lottery winner jailed
10 Jan 08 |  Cornwall
'Scratch of the day' secures win
26 Oct 07 |  Cornwall

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