Council to crack down on illegal dumping

The litter which was left behind at Kiloughter beach

Litter louts and people who dump waste illegally are being warned by Wicklow County Council that they could face stiff fines – or even a prison sentence.

The Council is ramping up its action on illegal waste activities in the county including dumping or burning of waste.

Last year 217 litter fines for €150 were issued for litter related offences.

In addition, 19 cases were taken to court by Wicklow County Council under the Waste Management and Litter Control legislation with fines of up to €1,500 and in one case a 30-day prison sentence.

The cases brought ranged from dumping waste in a field to a bag of bottles left beside recycling bins.

When Council Enforcement Officers retrieve evidence from dumped waste, action is always taken against offenders and if fines are not paid, the offender is taken to court where they will have to pay the fine as well as all legal and associated costs.

The attached cases* show examples of actions taken in 2016 for a variety of waste activities by householders and businesses. In 2017 the Council will continue to work to tackle the dumpers and offenders with the help of the community and increasingly through the use of technology.

A Council spokesperson stated: “Wicklow County Council takes illegal dumping extremely seriously.  Our team of Environmental Officers are active all over the county and dumpers will be pursued to the full extent of the law.  We will track down the offenders and take action to protect our county”.

 Members of the public are being asked to report illegal dumping via the 24 hour lo-call telephone number 1850 365 121 or [email protected].

A breakdown of cases taken by the Council in 2016

Court Date 2016 Waste Management File or Litter Fine Fine/       Contribution Legal Costs & Expenses Nature of Offence
13.01.16 Litter  Fine 3(1) & 26 €150.00 €500.21 3 bags of domestic waste dumped.  A search of the waste produced evidence.  A litter fine was issued.  The fine was not paid so legal proceedings were initiated.  A fine of €150 was imposed together with administrative and legal costs of €500.21 with 3 months to pay.
13.01.16 Waste Management  32(1) €750.00 €1,000.00 Dumping of waste in a field.  A search of the waste produced evidence.  Legal proceedings were initiated.  The accused pleaded guilty and was fined €750 together with cost of €1,000 with 6 months to pay.
15.02.16 Litter Fine 3(1) €250.00 €407.99 Bags of waste left out by accused were torn causing littering.  A litter fine was issued.  Litter fine was not paid so legal proceedings were initiated.  The accused did not attend court.  The judge ruled in favour of WCC and a fine of €250 was imposed together with costs of €407.99
14.03.16 LF 3(1) & 27(1) €750.00 €407.99 Bag of bottles left beside recycle bins.  A litter fine was issued.  The fine was not paid so legal proceedings were initiated.  A fine of €750 was imposed together with costs of €407.99 with 3 months to pay.
19.05.16 Waste Management 32(1) €1,211.15 Burning of domestic waste in a drum in the back garden.  Witnessed by an Environmental Warden.  Legal proceedings were initiated.   The accused pleaded guilty and costs of €1,211.15 were awarded.
02.06.16 Waste Management 32(1) €300.00 €1,500.00 Illegal burning of domestic waste and garden waste.  Witnessed by an Environmental Warden.  Legal proceedings were initiated.   Fine in the sum of €300 and costs in the sum of €1,500.00 were awarded
14.07.16 Waste Management 32(1) €150.00 €507.99  Illegal burning of waste in a dug out pit on building site.  Legal proceedings were initiated.  A fine of €150 was imposed together with costs of €507 with 3 months to pay.
21.07.16 Waste Management 32(1) €0.00 €0.00 Dumping of waste on private lands which in turn had been set alight.  Accused pleaded not guilty.  The Judge ruled that there was an element of doubt and case was dismissed.
20.09.16 Litter Fine 19(1) €1,000.00 €407.99 Two instances of unauthorised signage on a busy cross road junction.  A Litter fine was issued.  Fine was not paid so legal proceedings were initiated.  The accused did not attend court.   A fine for €500 for each unauthorised sign was imposed together with costs of €407.00
11.10.16 Waste Management S14 (6)(d) €765.00 Dumping of household waste on private lands.  Illegal proceedings were initiated.  Case struck out. Site cleaned up and costs were paid.
17.10.16 Litter Fine 3(1) €200.00 €344.82 1 bag of domestic waste attached to a municipal bin.  Evidence retrieved from waste in name of the accused.  A litter fine was issued.  The fine was not paid so illegal proceedings were initiated.  The accused pleaded guilty.  A fine of €200 was imposed together with costs of 344.82
07.11.16 Waste Management 32(1) €400.00 €869.39 10 bags of waste dumped into a field.  Evidence retrieved from the bags in the name of the accused.  Legal proceedings were initiated.  The accused pleaded guilty.  A fine of €400 was imposed together with costs of €869.39 with 6 months to pay.
07.11.16 Waste Management 32(1) €400.00 €964.65 15 bags of general domestic waste dumped plus other household waste which has been set alight.  Evidence retrieved from bags in the name of the accused.  Legal proceedings were issued. The accused pleading guilty.  A fine of €400 together with costs of €964.65 with 6 months to pay.
19.12.16 Waste Management 32(1) & Litter Fine 3 (1) €1,500.00 €1,304.46 2 bags of general domestic waste dumped on a laneway. A search of the waste produced evidence in the name of the accused. A litter fine was issued.  The fine was unpaid so legal proceedings were imitated.  The accused pleaded guilty.  A fine of €1,500 was imposed together with costs of €2,804.46 with 10 months to pay.
12.12.16 Waste Management 32(1) €0.00 €0.00 Illegal dumping and burning of several bags of domestic waste.  Legal proceedings were issued.  As this was a second offence committed by the accused a 30 day prison sentence was imposed.
19.12.16 Litter Fine  3(1) & 27(1) €250.00 €461.65 Bag of bottles left beside recycle bins.  A litter fine was issued.  The fine was not paid so legal proceedings were initiated.  A fine of €250 was imposed together with costs of €461.65 with 10 months to pay.

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