Two serial fly-tippers who were caught dumping tonnes of illegal trade waste, including asbestos, yards from a children’s dance school have been jailed.
George Kevin Parry (55) and David Smith (53), who both live in Aspes Road, West Derby, were sentenced at Liverpool Magistrates Court after pleading guilty to eight charges.
Mr Parry was given 20 weeks immediate custody in respect of each count (x4) to run concurrently. He was also disqualified from driving for 12 months and fined £580 in victim surcharge and costs.
Mr Smith was given 12 weeks immediate custody in respect of each count (x4) to run concurrently, and was also fined £580 in victim surcharge and costs.
Mr Parry and Mr Smith, both unemployed, were offering a ‘man and van’ service and were caught repeatedly dumping just a few metres from the entrance gate of Jade School for Dance at Back Broadway, Norris Green, an area that is well used by young children every day.
The fly-tipped waste was regularly set on fire which caused a danger to nearby property, although there is no suggestion that this was done by the defendants.
Although they pleaded guilty to four charges each, both defendants are suspected of carrying out similar activities over an extended period before they were caught.
The pair were caught out after a prolonged investigation into their activities by Liverpool City Council and Merseyside Police who installed covert cameras and recorded the offences in May last year.
Liverpool City Council seized their Ford transit van in Fazakerley on Thursday, 15 September 2016 under new laws allowing them to target vehicles suspected of being used for illegal waste dumping. The vehicle was destroyed.
The duo were officially charged on Thursday, 26 January this year and submitted guilty pleas to the offences on Thursday, 16 February.
The offences they were sentenced for related to:
· 17th March 2016 – large pile of industrial packaging and plastic, cardboard, fluorescent light bulbs and a brown leather couch.
· 24th April 2016 – large pile of asbestos sheeting, 6 bags of double bagged loose asbestos crumb, large pile of wood and cardboard.
· 23rd May 2016 – large pile of wood and building materials, plastic bags and household rubbish.
· 29th May 2016 – 2 yellow metric ton bags full of garden waste, approx. 14 rubble bags full of builders waste and tiles.
Fly-tipping is estimated to cost Liverpool City Council more than £1 million a year and the council has launched a crackdown on the crime. It is to double the number of mobile teams from two to four, with more emphasis on finding and fining those responsible – particularly builders and businesses illegally dumping trade waste.
Last week the city’s Mayor also announced the authority is looking at giving residents a rebate on their Council Tax for information that leads to a successful capture of offenders.
Councillor Steve Munby, Cabinet Member for Neighbourhoods, said: “Fly-tipping has a huge environmental and financial cost and must be fought tooth and nail. Today’s ruling is a warning to anyone thinking of fly-tipping that we will always take any action we can, including destroying your vehicle.
“The Clubmoor councillors and I are very pleased that action has been taken to bring these offenders to justice. The sentences passed will act as a deterrent to others and encourage people to dispose their waste legally and responsibly.”
Sgt Philip Cowin, Lead officer on the case for Merseyside Police, added: “Fly-tipping is a criminal offence and Merseyside Police will work with our partners to identify and prosecute people who commit environmental crime. Parry and Smith assumed they could carry out their illegal activities with impunity and blight our community. They were wrong.”
Christian Wilcox, The Environment Agency’s, Area Environment Manager for Merseyside, said: “We welcome this action taken by Liverpool City Council to combat fly tipping as it falls into their regulatory powers. The Environment Agency takes waste crime very seriously as it can cause pollution and put communities at risk.
“We urge landowners to be aware of their responsibilities, they can check on GOV.UK whether a potential tenant holds the correct permit to carry out waste operations. Local communities can also do their bit by reporting waste crime to our incident hotline on 0800 80 70 60 or crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.”
Liverpool City Council advise residents that most unwanted household items can be disposed of free by using the Bulky Bobs service or at their nearest Household Waste Recycling Centre. It recently opened a new waste facility in Cheadle Avenue, off Green Lane, in Liverpool 13.
For those looking to use a ‘man and van service’ to dispose of waste or unwanted items, the public should always make sure that it is somebody who is properly licensed as a waste carrier and will responsibly dispose of whatever you give them. Ask for a receipt and make a note of the registration number of their vehicle.
Anybody who has information about fly-tippers can anonymously contact Liverpool City Council’s Street Scene Team on 0151 233 3001