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Gateshead scrap firm fined £10,000

A Gateshead scrap metal and plastics recycling company has been fined £10,000 for carrying out waste activities without an environmental permit.

Michael Coates Recycling, which operates two sites on Heworth Way on the Pelaw Industrial Estate, admitted two charges of operating a waste facility without the appropriate permit.

Director Michael Coates also pleaded guilty to two similar charges of allowing the activities to be carried out.

The Environment Agency (EA) took legal action after an investigation discovered that the firm was receiving, sorting and storing mixed waste, which was not covered by the company’s existing permits.

As well as the fine, the company was ordered to pay legal costs of £2,000 and a victim surcharge of £15. Michael Coates himself was fined £350 and ordered to pay costs of £371.

Michael Coates Recycling has since applied for the relevant environmental permits, and is currently operating within the law. The firm has also recruited a qualified waste expert to oversee operations.

Jim Crammon, environmental crime officer at the EA, said: “Following the Environment Agency’s investigations, we are pleased to be able to say that the company has responded positively by obtaining appropriate permits and improving its practices to ensure the permits are not breached in the future.

Readers' comments (1)

  • Crime pays! An illegal trader breaks the law then is embraced by the authorities and has a pat on the back for applying for a licence.
    How much profit was made whilst the operations were illegal?
    Any fines applied for breaking the law are daft in relation to the profits made. Why in earth can't the fines be rated to turnover? Even then one wonders if the financial records reflect true trading activity.....

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