Substantial Fines Imposed | Illegal Waste Activity | KANGS Environment Offences Defence Solicitors
A company director and his company have both received substantial fines following a prosecution conducted by The Environment Agency before Worcester Crown Court for offences contrary to Regulation 38(1)(a) and regulation 12(1)(a) of the Environmental Permitting (England and Wales) Regulations 2016 (‘the Regulations’).
Helen Holder of KANGS outlines the circumstances.
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The Circumstances | KANGS Environment Agency Solicitors
The company, which ran a skip-hire business, delivered waste to its site which accumulated from both domestic and commercial customers as part of its usual trading activities.
The waste was sorted with some of it being burned, metal was sold for scrap and the rest despatched for lawful disposal.
In June 2019, officers of the Environment Agency discovered that the company’s trading activities were unlawful as neither the company nor the director held the required Environmental Permit.
Accordingly, in July 2019, the company director was advised in writing to stop the company’s trading activities and, during his subsequent formal Interview, he made admissions of liability.
The Relevant Law | KANGS Regulatory Solicitors
The Regulations provide:
‘Requirement for an environmental permit
12.—(1) A person must not, except under and to the extent authorised by an environmental permit—
(a) operate a regulated facility, or
(b) cause or knowingly permit a water discharge activity or groundwater activity.
38.—(1) It is an offence for a person to—
(a) contravene regulation 12(1),
In this highlighted case, the company director was convicted of the same offence under the provision in Regulation 41(1) which states:
41.—(1) If an offence committed under these Regulations by a body corporate is proved—
(a) to have been committed with the consent or connivance of an officer, or
(b) to be attributable to any neglect on the part of an officer,
the officer as well as the body corporate is guilty of the offence and liable to be proceeded against and punished accordingly.’
The Outcome | KANGS Company Directors Disqualification Solicitors
The court learned that the commission of the offences was aggravated by the fact that both the company and the director had previous convictions for similar offences committed in 2002 and 2012.
Accordingly, the Sentencing Judge stated that this additional offending amounted to an intentional and flagrant breach of the law.
The company was fined £8,500.
The director was:
- fined £68,000,
- ordered to pay Prosecution costs of £33,395.74,
- disqualified from acting as a company director for a period of five years.
How Can We Help? | KANGS National Criminal Offences Defence Solicitors
It is clear from the sentence handed down by the Sentencing Judge that convictions for breaches of the Environmental Permitting Regulations can have a serious significant impact upon both directors and their companies.
It is, therefore, crucially important that anyone being investigated or prosecuted by the Environment Agency should seek immediate expert advice.
At KANGS we strive to take the pressure off our clients when faced with serious allegations of alleged criminal activity of whatever nature and we provide the necessary attention to detail and commitment in the pursuit of the most successful outcome available.
Our Team is available to meet at our offices in London, Birmingham or Manchester or, alternatively, we are happy to arrange an initial no obligation meeting via telephone or video conferencing.
If we can be of assistance, please do not hesitate our Team through any of the following, who will be pleased to speak to you: