BRITISH motorist John Hopwood concocted a novel scheme to avoid payment when he was given a speeding fine - simply switch the road signs. Mr Hopwood, 44, had been snapped by a speed camera breaking the 30 miles per hour (50 km per hour) limit. So he went to a 40 mph (65 kph) area, removed a red "40" warning sign, drove back to the 30 mph area, attached it to a lamp post and took a photo as "proof" that his offence of driving at 48 mph (77 kph) had not been so bad. However, suspicion soon arose when other drivers started querying the sign. "This was a stupid act, bound to fail," Judge Anthony Ensor at Manchester Crown Court was quoted by media as telling Hopwood, who admitted trying to pervert justice. He was ordered today to serve an intermittent custodial sentence of 28 weeks which requires him to spend his weekends behind bars and told to pay 2,763 pounds ($6,880) in legal costs.