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Suspended prison sentence for car breakers

Two car breakers from Northern Ireland have received suspended prison sentences for keeping and depositing controlled waste.

Both Norman Purdy from Ballymoney and Trevor Corscadden from Castleroe were given three-month sentences, suspended for two years, at Coleraine Magistrates’ Court after pleading guilty to the same two illegal waste offences.

Northern Ireland Environment Agency (NIEA) officers visited Purdy’s car breaker’s yard in July 2014, where old cars are dismantled and the parts sold on.

They found an active car breaker with around 82 end-of-life vehicles on-site. None of the checked vehicles had been de-polluted, making them a hazardous waste.

Officers could not find any sign of measures to prevent environmental damage such as impermeable areas to prevent run-off into the surrounding ground, battery boxes or tanks to safely store fluids.

Meanwhile, officers from the NIEA visited Corscadden’s car breaker yard in July 2014 and found around 200 end-of-life vehicles on-site. Again they found that checked vehicles had not been de-polluted and there was a lack of measures to prevent environmental damage.

Corscadden has previous convictions for identical activities at the same site. In August 2008, he was fined £2,000 by the same court.

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