£10,305 in fines following environmental enforcement prosecutions

Legal action by Dartford Borough Council has seen magistrates hand out over £10,305 worth of fines to 30 local litterers and fly-tippers.

The prosecutions took place on Monday 26 November 2018 at Medway Magistrates’ Court as part of ongoing action by the Council to keep Dartford clean and litter free.

Three Dartford Borough Council fly tips / litter cases were originally summoned to appear before the court. In the first case the offender failed to pay a £75 litter ticket and was fined £745 by the court. In the second fly tip case, the offender paid prior to the court date at a cost of a £500 Fixed Penalty Notice, with the final case involving a littering offender paying prior to their court appearance at a cost of £125.

These significant fines highlight the heavy penalties that the courts are willing to impose for ignoring their demands.

28 litter cases were then summoned to appear before the court for non-payment of a £75 Fixed Penalty Notice, with 21 cases proven. The persons found guilty were fined £455 each, resulting in a total of £9,555 in fines issued for these offenses. In 6 of the 28 cases, having been summoned to court, the offender had paid prior to the court date at a cost of £125 each, totalling £750 in fines.

The prosecution success rate highlights that the courts agree that the fines were issued responsibly and correctly in the first place.

Jeremy Kite, Leader of Dartford Borough Council said:

“These fines prove that the Council will take positive action that will lead to prosecution in order to keep Dartford’s streets clean. We’re heavily targeting the small number of people who are willing to step outside the bounds of normal civic behaviour, as nobody wants to see rubbish in their streets or in the countryside.”

Dartford Borough Council currently operates a number of recycling points at locations particularly affected by fly-tipping such as New Barn Road, Denton Road, Temple Hill, Birchwood Road and Oakfield Lane, which educate the community regarding the correct use of recycling facilities and the consequences of the Council’s zero tolerance approach to those not adhering to correct recycling procedures.

The Environmental Protection Act makes it a criminal offence to dispose of rubbish other than at a licensed civic amenity site or other authorised site. The maximum penalty is an unlimited fine and/or five years imprisonment.

Dartford Borough Council’s environmental enforcement team are calling upon local residents to report fly-tipping and also to take care when hiring companies to take their waste away.

Residents that witness any fly-tipping within the Borough, should report it to Dartford Borough Council on 01322 343434 (during office hours) or 0345 634 1212 (out of hours), giving as much detail as possible.