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Leicester man imprisoned for illegal wood waste activity and anti-social behaviour

A man has been sentenced to 34 months in prison for operating an illegal waste facility, breech of ASBO and criminal damage at Leicester Crown Court.

Leslie Collins of Whitwick, 68, was given 16 months imprisonment for breaching environmental legislation and a further 18 months to run consecutively for breaching his ASBO and criminal damage. 

The charges were brought by the Environment Agency (EA).

The EA and Leicestershire Police worked together to investigate illegal wood waste activities being carried out at the defendant’s home in Whitwick between February and November 2012. 

Due to the residential location, Collins’ did not have an environmental permit.

Witnesses saw Collins unloading waste wood materials from his vehicle and taking them into his property which he would then chop, saw and break up in order to make kindling and other items.

The activities caused “maximum annoyance” and harassment for his neighbours, according to the EA.

Part way through the offending period, on 17 October 2012, Collins was convicted at Loughborough Magistrates Court for similar earlier offences.  Despite being fined by the Court, Collins resumed his unlawful waste wood business the following day. 

Collins also caused damage to a neighbour’s drain and poured a foul liquid containing urine, human excrement and other material over his neighbour’s fence on two occasions. These offences were captured on CCTV that a neighbour had installed. 

Speaking after the case, an EA officer in charge of the investigation said: “Mr Collins carried out these activities on a commercial scale risking damage to the environment, undercutting legitimate businesses and causing a nuisance to his neighbours. We work in partnership with the police and other enforcement agencies and value the contribution of vigilant members of the public to help crack down on waste crime”.

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