Sunday, June 4, 2023

Illegal waste tippers caught out on Facebook Messenger

FACEBOOK messages were the evidential trail that eventually led to two men being convicted for improper waste disposal.

Black bags containing household waste on a hillside between Cynheidre and Myrtle Hill, were traced back to a household in Pontyberem.

Carmarthenshire County Council enforcement officers, when interviewing the householder, discovered that she had paid Stuart James Pitson, of Heol y Meinciau, Pontyates, to remove the waste from her Ffordd Aneurin home. But another man later called for the waste and took it away.

Pitson, aged 34, admitted a charge of failing in his care as a broker to ensure rubbish was disposed of properly. Llanelli magistrates fined him £200 and ordered him to pay costs of £172.40 and an additional victim surcharge of £30.

Magistrates heard that Pitson had not removed the waste from the Pontyberem property as had been arranged but passed the job on to a third party who collected the waste and disposed of it. This included black bags, a double bed mattresses, a bed base, two televisions and a plastic box of car boot items. Some was taken to the recycling centre but the black bags were found dumped in a rural setting.

The case against the third party, Shane Goode, of Burry Port, for not having a waste carriers licence had already been proven and dealt with by the court at an earlier hearing.

The court was told that Facebook messages that had passed between Goode and Pitson led to Pitson being traced. When interviewed, Pitson claimed to have done nothing wrong. He had passed the waste on to a friend, Goode, who then dumped it.

Pitson was advised that in arranging for his friend to call and remove the waste he was acting as broker and was therefore was required to ensure that his friend was a licenced waste carrier.

Executive board member for environment and public protection Cllr Philip Hughes commended the authority’s enforcement officers for diligent work in ensuring those responsible for the waste dumping were brought to account.

He said: “If you produce, carry, import, treat, dispose or manage waste for other people, you have a legal duty of care for that waste. The duty of care aims to protect the environment and human health.

“The rules are quite simple – if you give your waste to another person or business you must check they are properly authorised to accept it for delivery to a permitted site or are a registered waste carrier.”

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