A prolific flytipper and uninsured white van driver from Blakenall, who drove without a license and then dumped ‘house clearance’ rubbish made up of old furniture, fridges and mattresses across beauty spots in Walsall, has received a prison sentence for his crimes.
Jamie Humpage aged 28 of Booth Close was yesterday sentenced to six months in prison at Dudley Magistrates Court for 8 separate offences across the borough. The first offence took place in Coppice Lane, Brownhills and the remaining 7 took place in Back Lane, Aldridge.
Walsall Council successfully brought about the prosecution and it is the first time that a custodial sentence has been handed down by a Judge for fly tipping in the borough. Walsall Council says this will send a stark warning to flytippers that the council and the courts are watching, gathering evidence and will take tough action on crimes of this nature.
Last month, Mr Humpage had failed to attend an earlier court summons. He was brought before District Judge Wilkinson at yesterday’s hearing under a bench warrant by West Midlands Police. When the charges were read out, he entered GUILTY pleas to 8 offences of depositing controlled waste otherwise than in accordance with an environmental permit contrary to section 33(6) of the Environmental Protection Act 1990.
Walsall Council’s Legal Services had put the case together after carefully gathering substantial evidence from residents, community protection officers and the borough’s clean and green team. The Judge saw photographic evidence of Mr. Humpage flagrantly disregarding the law and looking around to see if he and his accomplice were being watched whilst the fly tipping was taking place.
In his summary District Judge Wilkinson stated that: “These offences are so serious I’m going to give Mr. Humpage a custodial sentence and ban him from driving”. He went on to say: “Fly tipping is a blight on our environment and a clear message must be sent out to other people warning them that fly tipping for commercial gain will not be tolerated.”
Councillor Ian Shires Portfolio Holder for Community Protection at Walsall Council said:
“It’s good news for Walsall, that this man will now go to prison for his actions. It sends out a strong message to other would-be flytippers that we are watching you and we will not tolerate this behaviour.
“If you’re one of those people paying men like this to do house clearances on the cheap – think again and stop! The photographic evidence used in court clearly shows where your 'out of sight, out of mind’ rubbish ends up - slap bang in some of our most loved beauty spots. You have a responsibility to dispose of it properly and if you don’t and we trace evidence back to you, you will find yourself in court, too.”
“As the Judge says, flytipping is a blight on our streets, open spaces and our communities, so residents quite rightly expect us to take appropriate action. A sentence of this nature reflects how seriously the courts take it. The Judge in fact thanked council officers for their sustained efforts to bring about this important prosecution.”
Councillor Chris Jones, Portfolio Holder for Clean and Green added;
“This prosecution result came about after a lot of hard work from our council’s community protection officers, clean and green team and legal services. We had to take valuable time and resources away from the delivery of other important services to clear up and dispose of the waste flytipped by this individual.
“Collectively it costs the council - and you the taxpayer - around £460,000 each year to clear up litter and flytipping chaos like this. Local residents have made it clear to us how disgusted they are with this sort of behaviour and we are absolutely determined to tackle the tippers.”
If you see any flytipping in Walsall please report it immediately to Walsall Council contact centre: 01922 653344