Winslow fly-tipper picks up huge fine

The rubbish dumped
The rubbish dumped

Michael Morrison, 37, of Well Meadow, Aylesbury, was found guilty following trial at Wycombe Magistrates Court on 30 April 2019 of an offence of dumping waste illegally.

The court heard that on 13 May 2018, two officers from Thames Valley Police saw three men behaving suspiciously beside a pick-up in the lay-by at Shipton Bridge on the A413 south of Winslow.

On being questioned, Michael Morrison identified himself as the owner and driver of the vehicle.

The police officers noticed a pile of building waste on the ground behind the vehicle, which Morrison and the others explained was waste they had temporarily unloaded because it had been causing driving difficulties due to uneven loading.

They said they would be reloading it again and taking it for disposal.

The officers left, but returned to the site the following day to see if the waste had been removed. They found what they recognised as the same waste strewn down the bank next to where the pick-up had been parked.

Mr Morrison attended an investigative interview and claimed that the waste had in fact been reloaded and had been taken to a skip at Milton Keynes.

At the hearing, the Magistrates accepted that the waste fly tipped down the bank included ‘unique and remembered’ items that the police officers had seen the previous day when they had confronted Mr Morrison.

This, together with recently-trampled grass around the dumping site, was sufficient evidence to show that the material had come from the pick up.

Although the evidence did not show which of the three men had deposited the material down the bank, the law provides that the person who controls the use of a vehicle can be held responsible for waste dumped from it.

Morrison was found guilty, fined £300, and ordered to pay clearance and prosecution costs of £2,006.50. The magistrates also levied a victim surcharge of £30 and compensation of £427 – making a total to pay of £2,763.50.

Aylesbury Vale District Council Cabinet Member for Environment and Leisure Cllr Paul Irwin, speaking on behalf of the Waste Partnership for Buckinghamshire, said: "Our thanks go to the Thames Valley Police officers who followed up on their suspicions of the offender, and then diligently assisted us in getting this case to trial - it's a great example of joint working in tackling waste crime."

The case was prosecuted by Buckinghamshire County Council working on behalf of the Waste Partnership for Buckinghamshire.

The Waste Partnership launched the 'Illegal Dumping Costs' campaign in November 2003 to combat illegal dumping and waste management offences in Buckinghamshire. Since that date the Partnership has secured over 710 convictions against individuals and companies for illegal dumping and related offences.