A man who runs a waste clearing operation in South Tyneside has been prosecuted for failing to cooperate in an investigation into rubbish dumped in a country lane.
South Tyneside Magistrates’ Court heard that a quantity of domestic waste was found by a council officer to have been abandoned at the side of Moor Lane, Cleadon Village in June last year.
The waste was traced back to a property in Jarrow where the householder gave information about a waste clearance service advertised on social media by Karl Gilhespy, of John Williamson Street, South Shields.
Action was taken after 34-year-old Gilhespy ignored a formal notice inviting him to attend an interview under caution.
A further Notice was served requiring him to make himself available to answer questions regarding the abandonment of waste.
Again, this was ignored – an offence under section 110 of the Environment Act.
Magistrates were told that Gilhespy made no attempt to contact South Tyneside Council to discuss the matter and he was fined £180 in his absence and ordered to pay £100 costs and a £30 victim surcharge.
The prosecution followed the case of Graeme Stephen, aged 37, of St Cuthberts Avenue in South Shields.
Magistrates heard that a quantity of waste had been abandoned on the drive of an empty private property in St Cuthberts Avenue.
The property had been subject to constant flytipping over the years resulting in considerable clean-up costs to the owner.
The abandoned materials, found in April 2016, led enforcement officers to Stephen’s address.
The court was told that, after admitting the offence, Stephen was issued with a Fixed Penalty Notice of £150.
However the notice, a further replacement notice as well as two reminders went ignored.
Stephen was fined £100 and ordered to pay costs of £50 and a £30 victim surcharge.
A spokeswoman for South Tyneside Council said: “Prosecution is always a last resort but the Council was left with no alternative in both cases but to pursue the matters through the courts.
“We hope this serves as a reminder that we will take action against those who fail to comply with the notices served on them.”