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A serial freeloader barred from every restaurant in Britain was jailed today, but not before being reminded by the judge of an old expression: there is no such thing as a free lunch. Christopher Travis, 52, had only been out of jail for three days when he went into celebrity chef Michael Caines’ Abode restaurant at the Royal Clarence Hotel in Exeter and ordered a three course meal with wine.
Travis, who has 86 prior convictions - many for eating meals in restaurants and pubs and refusing to pay - was previously banned by an ASBO from entering any restaurant or pub two years ago, but has breached the order 13 times. The 52-year-old, from Exeter, Devon, has moved around Britain repeating the same trick against more than a dozen restaurants.
'Nothing justifies going into a smart restaurant and ordering a three course meal and a bottle of wine when you cannot pay. 'You said you wanted to have a good meal before you went back into custody. 'The order was made in June 2010 and this is the 13th breach. It is a very simple condition not to enter licensed restaurants or pubs. 'You have totally ignored that, you have ignored it flagrantly, deliberately and repeatedly.'