A woman has been fined a total of £331 for putting her rubbish out too early. Samantha Shelton, from Poltimore Lawn in Barnstaple, was prosecuted by North Devon Council, after she left rubbish bags out eight days before her collection was due, back in September. She has been ordered to pay a fine of £210, £100 costs and a £21 victim surcharge. As Miss Shelton did not attend the hearing at North Devon Magistrates yesterday (Thursday), the case was proved in her absence. Executive member for environment, Cllr Rodney Cann, says: People are legally required to dispose of their rubbish in a responsible manner and the vast majority of our district does. Part of that includes placing rubbish out no earlier than the night before a collection is due. We are always reluctant to take formal action. However, when we know these regulations are being ignored, leading to littering offences, we will investigate and take action if appropriate. This prosecution sends a clear message that we are serious about keeping our district clean and we hope residents will support us in achieving this. To report littering, fly-tipping or other environmental offence, email email@example.com or call 01271 388870.