Big fines for Northern Ireland waste offenders

Men who allowed their land in Northern Ireland to be used as dumps for illegal waste from the republic have been hit with hard penalties under the Proceeds of Crime Act.

Turlough Breslan (54) of Maghery Road, Portadown, was made the subject of a confiscation order of £166,696.65 at Omagh Crown Court under the act while Bernard Barrett (66) of Moneygar Road, Trillick, Co. Tyrone was forced to pay £100,000

During a site visit in August 2006, officers from the Northern Ireland Environment Agency (NIEA), discovered that Breslan had been illegally keeping around 8,000 tonnes of controlled waste at Derrylea House, Derrylea Road, Dungannon.

The waste, derived from an animal feed company in the Republic of Ireland, was being kept without a waste management licence being in place for the site.

An inspection under warrant was carried out in December 2006, at which point NIEA officers interviewed Breslan under caution.

Breslan was also given a three year conditional discharge under Article 4 (1) b of the Waste and Contaminated Land Order (Northern Ireland) 1997.

Barrett had also been taking unlicensed waste from the Republic of Ireland and using it to infill a sand and gravel quarry that he owned.

NIEA officers had estimated that the quarry had been filled with a minimum of 6,500 tonnes of municipal waste.

Cross-border dumping has been a significant problem for the neighbouring countries, with cowboy contractors seeking to avoid costs by flytipping on an industrial scale.

Sam Bond

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