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Durham men charged collective 2k fine for waste crime

Durham county council has ordered three people to pay a collective fine of over £2,000 for waste offences. 

The case against Karl Armstrong, John Jackson and Gianni Quinn was heard at Peterlee Magistrates Court. 

According to the council, Mr Armstrong pleaded guilty to dumping waste in South Moor without an Environmental Permit. Mr Jackson was prosecuted after electrical items were found dumped at Jubilee Bridge in Willington and Gianni Quin was taken to court for collecting and selling scrap metal without a scrap collector’s licence. 

Ian Hoult, neighbourhood protection manager at Durham county council, said: “Environmental offences have a significant impact. They pollute our green spaces, impact on communities and public rights of way, and result in time and public money being spent on waste removal. In terms of scrap metal, a licence ensures that people are trading legally and protects the public and businesses from scrap metal theft. 

“As these three cases show, we take environmental crimes very seriously and those who are found to be breaking the law can face hefty legal bills as a result.” 

Waste 

The council said that neighbourhood wardens were called to assist with clearing up waste in South Moor after it was discovered by its Clean and Green Team. Investigations by the council led to Mr Armstrong, who admitted he was paid to remove the waste. 

Mr Armstrong told the council he left the waste at South Moor for someone else to collect and was unaware he needed a permit. 

The council ordered him to pay a £200 fine, £629 in costs, and a victim surcharge of £80, totalling £909. 

WEEE 

According to the council, CCTV footage showed a man leave a vehicle and leave two televisions and two unidentifiable smaller appliances among trees. 

It then traced the registration of the vehicle back to Mr Jackson, who denied knowledge of the offence. 

However, when shown the footage under interview, he admitted to the offence. 

Mr Jackson was ordered by the court to pay a £200 fine, £379 in court costs and a victim surcharge of £80, totalling £659. 

Scrap 

Durham county council said wardens had received information that a van had been seen collecting scrap metal across the region which had then been sold on to a business in Wingate. 

The council added that checks of the van’s registration had led to Mr Quinn being identified, and a visit to the Wingate business showed records of scrap metal being sold by him for £7,348. 

Mr Quinn, during an interview, said he collected and sold scrap metal but believed he only needed a waste carriers’ licence. He accepted that he would need to apply for a scrap metal license within 48 hours of the interview. 

However, according to the council he refused to do so, leading to Mr Quinn being fined £200. Additionally, he was ordered to pay £335 in costs and a £80 victim surcharge, together totalling £615. 

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