A building company and its director have been found guilty for offences relating to waste which was dumped illegally at Park Lane, Lane End in October 2018.
The building company and its 44 year old director of Hughenden Avenue, High Wycombe were found guilty following trial at High Wycombe Magistrates Court on Monday 2nd December 2019.
The court heard that on Monday 29th October 2018, an investigator from the Waste Partnership for Buckinghamshire examined waste that had been fly tipped in a field gateway near where Park Lane crosses the M40.
Details were found in the waste which were traced back to two domestic dwellings in High Wycombe. Building work had been carried out at both properties by the building company of which a 44 year old man was the sole company director.
The 44 year old man was interviewed at High Wycombe Police Station and denied any knowledge of, or involvement with, the illegal dumping. He explained that he had taken waste from one property and stored it with other waste at the second and then made an informal arrangement with the householder of the second property to dispose of all the waste.
When the investigators followed up the explanation they found the householder had paid someone cash in hand to remove the waste and kept no paperwork. Despite the householder providing information which led to a suspect being interviewed, there was found to be insufficient evidence to take a prosecution further.
The 44 year old man and his company were therefore prosecuted for failing in their duty of care regarding the waste. Responsibility for clearing up after the incident fell jointly to Wycombe District Council and the West Wycombe Estate. The prosecution sought costs to cover the expense incurred.
The magistrates found both the 44 year old man and the company guilty for failing in their duty of care to dispose of the waste properly.
The building company was fined £500 and was ordered to pay clean-up compensation of £442.50, a contribution to investigation and legal costs of £250 and a victim surcharge of £50.
The 44 year old man was conditionally discharged for 12 months as well as being ordered to pay a contribution to investigation and legal costs of £250 plus a victim surcharge of £20. This made a total of £1,512.50 for the 44 year old man and his company to pay.
Wycombe District Council Cabinet Member for Environment Julia Adey, speaking on behalf of the Waste Partnership for Buckinghamshire, said: ‘The duty of care places a responsibility on the producer of waste to make sure that it is disposed of properly.
At the very least they must ensure that the carrier that took it away can be traced in case fly tipping does occur. The defendants failed to do so in this case, and were therefore liable under the law.‘
The case was prosecuted by Buckinghamshire County Council working on behalf of the Waste Partnership for Buckinghamshire.
Since 2003 the Waste Partnership for Buckinghamshire has secured over 730 convictions against individuals and companies for illegal dumping and related offences, leading to fines and costs being imposed against offenders totalling over £1,000,000.
Fly-tipping in Buckinghamshire can be reported at www.fixmystreet.buckscc.gov.uk.
*Source of article : Press release from Buckinghamshire County Council.