Nine fly tippers who dumped enough construction and demolition waste to fill more than three Olympic size swimming pools were sentenced at Maidstone Crown Court yesterday.
More than 8000 cubic metres of waste was tipped at the illegal site in Polhill, Kent, between April and May 2008.
The rubbish was made up of construction and demolition waste and included very small bits of wood, plastic, metal, paper and tarmac.
Following a tip off the Environment Agency conducted surveillance to gather evidence of those illegally tipping at the site, and the site operators, at the site adjacent to the M25 owned by the Highways Agency.
Once evidence was gathered the site was raided on in May 2008 and two arrests were immediately made. At that point the pile of waste was 300 metres long, up to five metres wide and up to three metres high.
The Environment Agency investigated further and took enforcement action against twelve defendants including the site operator, owners of the waste and those who illegally it dumped at Polhill.
The nine defendants and the fines were:
PJ Brown Ltd – fined £25,000, ordered to pay clean up costs of £6,250 and costs of £5,000
Peter Alexander – fined £14,000, ordered to pay clean up costs of £16,000 and costs of £5,000
Gregory Roff – fined £9,000, ordered to pay clean up costs of £10,000 and costs of £3,000
Marc Gwyther – fined £4,000, ordered to pay £1,500 in clean up costs and costs of £1,500
United Grab Hire Ltd – fined £9,000, ordered to pay £500 clean up costs and costs of £3,000
LMD (Crushed Aggregates) Ltd – fined £7,000, ordered to pay clean up costs of £750 and costs of £3,000
Craig Starbuck – fined £2,000, ordered to pay clean up costs of £200 and costs of £250
John Anthony Ryan – fined £250, ordered to pay clean up costs of £200 and costs of £250
BSP (Knockholt) Ltd – fined £4,000, ordered to pay clean up costs of £250 and costs of £3,000
A further two defendants have already received formal cautions for their involvement in the illegal operation and Gillivans Transport Ltd has been found guilty previously at Sevenoaks Magistrates Court receiving a fine of more than £7,000. The remaining defendant, the site operator, is due in court later this week.
Dave Eden, Team Leader for Environmental Crime, said: “We are committed to stamping out illegal waste operations and will continue to use all resources available to us to target criminals who break the law by operating or using these sites.
“Illegal waste sites put the environment and human health at risk and undermine legitimate businesses. Prosecution is always a last resort, but there will always be some people who are persistent offenders and determined to flout the law to their own ends.
“These are the exact people the Environment Agency’s Environmental Crime Team has been set up to investigate.”