Two defendants have recently been prosecuted before Nottingham Magistrates’ Court following complaints concerning the illegal burning of material at a site in Cotham Lane, Hawton, Newark. 

Helen Holder of Kangs Solicitors outlines the circumstances.

The Team at Kangs Solicitors regularly defends clients facing charges being brought by the Environment Agency alleging all manner of offences including, for example, those involving:

  • breaches of environmental permits, exemptions, registrations & licences,
  • water pollution,
  • land contamination,
  • unlawful disposal/dumping of hazardous substances (asbestos, harmful chemicals, radioactive material),
  • fly tipping.

For more information concerning our work involving Environment Agency prosecutions please follow this link: Environment Agency.

For an initial no obligation discussion, please contact our team at any of the offices detailed below:

The Case in Focus | Kangs Environment Agency Solicitors

The circumstances

  • site visits conducted by officers of the Environment Agency discovered that substantial volumes of waste were being burned and they discovered at least one thousand bales of waste that contained carpets, duvets, and mattresses. 
  • The first defendant, who had been operating from the site since February 2018 told officers that he was paid £50 per tonne for the waste and that there were three hundred tonnes of bales on the site. 
  • Initially, he denied illegally burning waste claiming that most of his activities involved the grading of wood which activity he believed was permitted by exemptions from an existing Environmental Permit.
  • In reality, the Environment Agency had de-registered fourteen exemptions in May 2018 on the basis that they posed a significant environmental risk. 
  • The second defendant admitted that he had allowed the first defendant to use the site and that he was aware that waste was being burned. 
  • It was accepted that the second defendant had cleared the site by removing the waste to landfill at a cost exceeding £64,000.

The charges

  • The first defendant was charged with operating a regulated facility, namely a waste operation for the deposit, treatment and storage of waste contrary to Regulations 12(1) and 38(1)(a) of the Environmental Permitting (England & Wales) Regulations 2016.
  • The second defendant was charged with knowingly permitting the operation of a regulated facility, namely a waste operation for the deposit, treatment and storage of waste contrary to Regulations 12(1) and 38(1)(a) of the Environmental Permitting (England & Wales) Regulations 2016.

Sentencing

Both defendants pleaded guilty with the consequences that:

  • The first defendant was sentenced to twenty-weeks imprisonment suspended for two years with the requirements to complete a twelve weeks curfew. He was ordered to pay costs of £18,236.20, a victim surcharge of £115 and he was disqualified from holding office as a company director for a period of five years.
  • The second defendant was fined £2,666 and ordered to pay costs of £18,236.79 and a victim surcharge of £170. 

Official comment

A spokesperson for the Environment Agency said:

‘We hope this case will send a clear message that we do not hesitate to take action to protect the environment and bring perpetrators to justice.

These people operated the site without the required permit which, as well as undermining the regulatory regime, also had an impact on lawful waste operators.

We are actively targeting illegal waste activities across the country and would urge all those seeking to become involved in the waste industry to ensure they have the appropriate permits and authorisations in place before commencing their operations.’

How Can We Help? | Kangs Waste Disposal Offences Defence Solicitors

It is clear that convictions for breaches of the Environmental Permitting Regulations  result in a significant impact on an individual not only potentially risking liberty but also resulting in financial and ongoing business activities consequences. 

It is therefore crucially important that if you are, or anticipate, being investigated or prosecuted by the Environment Agency expert advice is sought immediately.   

Please do not hesitate to contact our team who will be delighted to assist you.

Contact:

John Veale
jveale@kangssolicitors.co.uk
0121 449 9888 | 07989 521210

Suki Randhawa
srandhawa@kangssolicitors.co.uk
0121 449 9888 | 020 7936 6396 | 07989 521210