A Bristol man has been jailed for over a year and ordered to pay over £2,000 after being found guilty of fly tipping in South Gloucestershire, which is the longest ever sentence the council has secured through an environmental prosecution.
Daniel Bryant, aged 44, formerly of Duncombe Road, Speedwell, Bristol was prosecuted by our environmental protection team after a number of fly tips took place in South Gloucestershire during 2017.
The court heard that between 1 January and 16 August 2017, Bryant set up a business known as ‘Magic Rubbish Clearances’ which was advertised using social media (Facebook) and business cards. During this period Bryant collected controlled waste for payment from a wide variety of locations in the area.
During March his vehicle was witnessed at the scene of two separate fly tips in Cattybrook Road, South Gloucestershire. One of these offences took place after he attempted to fly tip his load on Siston Common, but had been spotted by a resident and left, only to dump the waste a short distance away on Cattybrook Road. It was later found that social media was used to organise the waste collections.
On 3 June he was photographed depositing a number of mattresses at Beach Hill in Upton Cheyney, South Gloucestershire. The witness posted the pictures on Facebook and the post received 3,000 ‘hits’. Bryant later returned to collect the mattresses having been made aware of the ‘hits’. This fly tip and its Facebook ‘success’ was published in the local press at the time.
When interviewed by council officers, Bryant denied the Beach Hill fly tip, claiming the deposit of the mattresses was accidental, but fully admitted the two fly tips at Cattybrook Road. He also admitted Waste Transfer Note offences and to processing waste at his home address.
During the investigation, it was discovered that Bryant had been disqualified from driving on 28 May 2017, and less than a week later he had been seen using the same vehicle to carry out these fly tip offences.
In court, Bryant pleaded guilty to the two Cattybrook Road fly tips and was handed a custodial sentence of 68 weeks, along with a £2,070.30 in costs and £140 victim surcharge (total £2,210.30). The Magistrate drew attention to him committing these offences whilst disqualified, and activated a previous suspended sentence of 16 weeks which was added to 52 weeks custody for the fly tips (26 weeks per offence).
The case was heard at Bristol Magistrates’ Court on Wednesday 31 January.
South Gloucestershire Council’s Cabinet Member for Communities and Tourism Cllr Heather Goddard said: “Fly tipping is an issue that affects our communities and local environment and this activity will not be tolerated in South Gloucestershire. This particular case saw the offender disregarding the law and a previous conviction to deliberately dump the waste in a rural location.
“Through liaison with the police it was established that he carried out these fly tips whilst banned from driving, which helped us to secure this excellent result and considerable custodial sentence.
“There is no excuse for this type of behaviour. Waste crime puts the environment at risk and anyone found to be fly tipping in South Gloucestershire will be prosecuted. Residents also have a duty of care to ensure that they only give their waste to registered waste carriers.”
Residents and businesses are advised to only give their rubbish to an Environment Agency registered waste carrier.
Contractors should ensure that they hold a Registered Waste Carriers Licence and they comply with the Waste Transfer Note requirements.
You can carry out these simple steps to make sure your waste is disposed of legally:
Ask for a copy of the company’s waste carrier registration certificate and ask where the waste is being taken. Legitimate firms will be happy to provide this information. Do not be tempted to use people offering cheap waste clearance on sites such as Facebook and Gumtree unless you have confirmed that they are registered with the Environment Agency
Check whether the waste carrier is registered by calling the Environment Agency on 08708 506506 or by checking on their website http://epr.environment-agency.gov.uk/ePRInternet/searchregisters.aspx
Ask for a registered trading address and contact telephone number for the trader and get a receipt.
Unwanted goods and household or garden waste can all be disposed of at no cost via the council’s Sort It centres.