Furniture dumping man fined

A MAN caught red-handed on closed circuit TV cameras dumping a settee in a shopping precinct must pay more than £1,100 after a court appearance today.

Barry Foreman, 39, of Hartlepool, was fined £600 and ordered to pay costs of £537 after he pleaded guilty to fly-tipping at Teesside Magistrates’ Court

The court heard security staff monitoring Stockton Borough Council’s CCTV surveillance system at Billingham town centre spotted a white Ford Transit tipper van driving into a service area to the rear of West Precinct on the morning of August 10 last year.

They saw Foreman dump a number of small items and a large orange sofa before driving off.

The town centre manager contacted the council’s neighbourhood enforcement service who were able to establish that Foreman owned the vehicle by carrying out a DVLA registration search.

The court was told that Foreman was convicted of a similar offence by Hartlepool Magistrates’ Court in March 2008 as he failed, without reasonable excuse, to provide Hartlepool Borough Council with evidence that he held a valid waste carriers license.

The court heard Foreman, of Mason Walk, Hartlepool, had formerly been in the scrap metal trade, but was no longer and is due to start a new job shortly.

Councillor Steve Nelson, the council’s cabinet member for housing and community safety, said the court’s sentence should act as a reminder of the penalties facing those who chose to dump waste.

He said: “This man thought he could get away with dumping unwanted items on commercial premises, but the law caught up with him after the town centre manager and council’s neighbourhood enforcement team worked together to track him down.

“This offence was premeditated. He not only created an unsightly mess, he left his rubbish for someone else to clear up despite there being other ways of disposing of it properly.

“We will prosecute fly tippers whenever we can because we have a duty to care for our area for other, law-abiding residents and businesses.”