Swinton business Roydon Resource Recovery fined for illegal export of 247 tonnes of waste to Poland

Illegal waste (pic from Environment Agency)

A Swinton-based waste business, Roydon Resource Recovery Ltd, and one of its directors, have been convicted of the illegal export of waste. 

Additionally they were convicted of a disregard for proper management protocols. The prosecution came after 10 shipping containers, containing 247 tonnes of refuse, were unlawfully exported to Poland under the guise of the green list process.

The illegal export, which was claimed to be clean plastics sorted from household waste, instead contained a majority of plastics which were unsuitable for recycling. The waste was also heavily contaminated with other household items including electrical items, nappies and oil cannisters. 

Roydon, part of a group of recycling companies of which Wilfred Sumner is a director, gained significant financial advantage through these actions, it was alleged by the Environment Agency, which brought the prosecution.

On its website the company describes itself as being “responsible for managing the recycling of waste material. These include plastics, paper, cardboard, metal and WEEE both in the UK and abroad with government/environment agency registered facilities.”

It also says it is licensed by the Environment Agency.

The company did not respond to a request from TheBusinessDesk.com for comment.

At a sentencing heard at Manchester Crown Court last week 27 March Roydon Resource Recovery Ltd was found to be directly implicated in this illegal export. 

The company was ordered to pay a total fee of nearly £870,000, including £811,181 in Proceeds of Crime. The company’s director, Wilfred Sumner, was also ordered to pay a further £10,000.

The Environment Agency prosecution followed an investigation which found that Roydon exported waste intended to be incinerated as fuel and alleged there was no intention of it being recycled. 

Emma Viner, Enforcement & Investigations Manager said: “The Environment Agency welcome the outcome of this prosecution.  Roydon Resource Recovery Ltd and Wilfred Sumner showed a disregard for legislation in place to protect our environment and communities.    

“Environment Agency officers work tirelessly to tackle this type of criminality and the outcome of this prosecution sends a strong message to those involved in waste crime.  Through our investigations and our work under the Proceeds of Crime Act we will ensure that waste crime does not pay and that criminals will be brought to justice. 

“Illegal waste operations like this, undermine legitimate businesses, undercut their prices, and blight the environment.”

The last set of accounts for parent company Roydon Holdings Ltd show the business made pre-tax profits of £3.6million in 2022, on turnover of £32.6m.