Upminster fly-tipper given suspended jail sentence for dumping asbestos waste
A recent article that we spotted in the Newham Recorder was, we thought, another good illustration among many of the various problems that can be caused by dumped asbestos, which specialist asbestos removal contractors often have to take considerable care to clear up.
The story concerned a fly-tipper from Upminster, east London, who dumped 36 tonnes of asbestos-contaminated waste on a street in the Newham neighbourhood of Beckton. For this, the 26-year-old was handed a suspended jail sentence.
Offences supported a £400-a-week cocaine habit
Stuart Beattie dumped the dangerous rubble in two separate spots on Eric Clarke Lane in March this year, with the court hearing that he required the money from fly-tipping to support his £400-a-week cocaine habit. His actions forced the closure of the road and the diversion of buses, while the entrance to children’s riding stables was also blocked.
Last month, he admitted fly-tipping at Thames Magistrates Court. The seriousness of the offence led the case then being transferred to Snaresbrook Crown Court.
The judge took into account Beattie’s admission and cooperation with a drug rehabilitation order to tackle his addiction in handing him a two-year suspended jail sentence. He was also convicted of driving offences on the basis of the four-axle dumper truck he used being found to be unsafe, uninsured and used without a waste carrier’s licence.
Beattie’s punishment also included a £1,900 fine and an order to pay Newham Council £2,500 in compensation.
A very serious offence, but was the punishment heavy enough?
Councillor Forhad Hussain, cabinet member for crime and anti-social behaviour at Newham Council, expressed his disappointment with the sentence. He told the Recorder: “In this case it cost the council over £8,000 just to clear the mess, that’s without the cost of the investigation, surveillance and man hours to bring the case to court.
“The £2,500 compensation simply doesn’t cover the costs – and it’s Newham Council tax payers who will have to pick up the tab.
“This is an extremely disappointing result for Newham and its residents… the courts must make the penalty fit the crime. Fly-tipping on this scale is big business, with big profits.”
We would struggle to disagree with Mr Hussain’s assessment here at Trident Asbestos Solutions. Too few people realise the important role of asbestos removal contractors’ work in safely clearing away and disposing of asbestos when it has been illegally dumped.
By contacting our team today, you can receive guidance related to any worries about you may have about asbestos that may require the attention of our suitably experienced and qualified professionals.