10:34AM, Friday 04 October 2019
The waste in Little Marlow that was traced back to VA Joinery & Carpentry Ltd
A builder and his company has been ordered to pay thousands of pounds after waste was found dumped illegally in Little Marlow.
VA Joinery & Carpentry Ltd, based in London, and its project manager Audrius Preimonas, 45, each pleaded guilty at High Wycombe Magistrates’ Court on September 11, 2019 to offences relating to waste which was dumped illegally at the approach to Little Marlow Sewage Treatment Works in April 2018.
The court heard that on April 14, 2018, a member of the public examined two deposits of illegally dumped waste in Muschallik Road, a private road forming the approach to sewage works - which is not part of the site owned by Thames Water Utilities Ltd.
They found details in the dumped material which were traced by Waste Partnership for Buckinghamshire investigators to work carried out by VA Joinery & Carpentry Ltd.
The location where the waste was deposited
Mr Preimonas was interviewed at a London police station, where he denied any knowledge of or involvement with the illegal dumping.
But he confirmed that a waste carrier known to him only as ‘Martin’ had removed two loads of waste from the site where the work was taking place.
He also admitted that the company had done nothing to confirm Martin's identity or credentials.
The company had refused to pay Martin cash in hand - it was arranged that he would come to the company's office afterwards to collect payment, but he never arrived.
The Magistrates fined VA Joinery & Carpentry Ltd £2,000 for duty of care failures regarding the waste, and Mr Preimonas £1,077 for the same offence.
Investigation and legal costs totalled £600 and victim surcharges of £277 were also levied - making a combined total of £3,954.
The area where the waste was dumped is said to be a frequently-used spot for waste criminals.
Wycombe District Council cabinet member for environment Julia Adey said: "This case yet again underlines the importance of identifying waste carriers properly - this is particularly an issue in the building trade, which is targeted by opportunistic waste criminals.
"Although the company in this case did the right thing by refusing to pay cash in hand, they made no other checks to establish the identity of the carrier.
"So when the man failed to turn up to receive payment, the company had no means of tracing him, and they then became liable for the fly tipping themselves through failure in their duty of care."
The Waste Partnership for Bucks launched its #SCRAPflytipping campaign in August 2018 to reduce fly-tipping in the county.
It has secured more than 720 convictions against individuals and companies for illegal dumping and related offences.
On average since April 2010, there has been at least one conviction per week for illegal dumping offences in Buckinghamshire.
This resulted in a halving of reported incidents and saving to the Buckinghamshire tax payer over the period through reducing removal and disposal costs.
Report fly-tipping in Buckinghamshire by visiting www.fixmystreet.buckscc.gov.uk
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