Builder filmed illegally dumping waste gets suspended prison sentence

A West Yorkshire builder caught on camera dumping and illegally storing construction waste in a rat-infested bin yard has been hit with a fine and suspended prison sentence.

Magistrates in Leeds heard that David Dixon, of Nansen Grove, Bramley was spotted illegally tipping waste from his van and was filmed by a neighbour fed up with the mess and nuisance he was creating.

After the footage was passed to Leeds City Council’s serious environmental crime team, they identified Dixon’s vehicle before tracing and prosecuting him.

The court heard Dixon, who was also convicted of fly tipping in 2010, failed to co-operate with the investigation and didn’t attend court on several occasions.

He was finally arrested by West Yorkshire Police and appeared in Leeds Magistrates Court on 28 February.

As a result, he was sentenced to six weeks imprisonment suspended for six months. Due to having outstanding court fines he was also ordered to pay £145 in costs and a victim surcharge of £154.

During the investigation it was found Dixon didn’t hold a waste carrier licence to transport waste as part of his business. The bin yard used to dump and store the waste was also infested with rats.

As part of his defence Dixon stated the bin yard was owned by his sister, and he was allowed to dump waste in there.

However, council environmental enforcement officers found there was no environmental permit or exemption allowing the depositing and storage of waste in the bin yard and therefore the dumping was illegal and unsafe. They also found that the bin-yard did not belong to his sister.

Councillor Mohammed Rafique, Leeds City Council’s executive member for climate, energy, environment and green space, said: “I’m proud of the work Leeds is doing to combat fly tipping in our city and grateful to those residents who are playing their part, whether that is making sure that they check who takes their waste away or providing important information to help us track and convict fly tippers.

“We have a zero-tolerance approach to environmental crime and I hope this particular prosecution is a warning to anyone thinking about fly tipping their business waste.

“We know most people want to dispose of their waste correctly, and we will soon be formally launching an innovative accreditation scheme for Leeds to help residents find someone trusted.”