A GIBRALTARIAN couple has been fined £1000 after they cut down an olive tree in their garden.

Mr and Mrs Oton, of South Pavilion Road, were renovating their patio when they decided to cut down the tree.

They claimed the plant was diseased and took it down to stop the rot spreading through their garden.

However, the couple did not check with the Town Planning authorities before they chopped it down.

In Gibraltar, a tree with a trunk circumference of over 75mm is protected by law.

Anyone wanting to take a tree of this size or more down must seek out a consultation beforehand.