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EA fines illegal operator for waste storage on farm

A “persistent waste offender” has been fined £3,333 for illegally storing waste in a farm in Central Bedfordshire, said the Environment Agency (EA).

Kenneth Joseph Murphy of Luton had been storing skips full of household and construction waste at Hill Farm, in Maulden, since 2011. The farm owner had given him permission to leave his skip lorry and empty containers on the site, but never agreed to allow him to bring in waste, according to the EA.

In addition to the fine, Murphy was also ordered to pay costs of over £3,000 and a victim surcharge of £120 by Bedford and Mid Beds Magistrates’ Court.

He pleaded guilty to operating a waste deposit and storage facility in the farm without an environmental permit.

The EA first warned Murphy that what he was doing was illegal in 2011. The agency sent him a notice letter to remove all the waste from the farm in September 2012. The waste was not cleared completely until 20 November 2012 and, from records held by local licensed waste sites, only one of the skips was taken there, said the EA.

Murphy told EA officers that he took the skips to the farm because he could not afford to take the waste to a proper permitted site.

He had two previous convictions for illegal waste activities in 2010.

Phil Henderson, EA environmental crime team leader said: “This business was able to undercut its competitors because it avoided the costs of properly disposing of the waste and of obtaining an environmental permit to operate a waste transfer station.”

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