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25 May 2010, 12:54
Nine people have been fined more than £74,000 after enough rubbish to fill three Olympic sized swimming pools was found dumped in Kent.
They were arrested after authorities got a top off about the illegal waste site in Polhill near Sevenoaks close to the M25.
The rubbish, which stretched over 300 meters and was three meters high, had come from construction and demolition sites.
The Environment Agency carried out surveillance work and gathered evidence on activity that was happening on the site before a raid took place in May 2008.
Nine defendants have appeared in court and received the following fines:
A further two defendants have already received formal cautions for their involvement in the illegal operation and Gillivans Transport Ltd has been found guilty previously at Sevenoaks Magistrates Court receiving a fine of more than £7,000. The remaining defendant, the site operator, is due in court later this week.
David Eden, Team Leader for Environmental Crime, said: “We are committed to stamping out illegal waste operations and will continue to use all resources available to us to target criminals who break the law by operating or using these sites.
“Illegal waste sites put the environment and human health at risk and undermine legitimate businesses. Prosecution is always a last resort, but there will always be some people who are persistent offenders and determined to flout the law to their own ends. These are the exact people the Environment Agency’s Environmental Crime Team has been set up to investigate.”