The owner of a van had his vehicle confiscated and crushed as a result of a collaborative prosecution for fly-tipping by Bradford Council and Leeds City Council.
Gavin Eastwood appeared before Kirklees Magistrates Court on Monday, 2nd October, where he was found guilty of fly-tipping offences under the Environmental Protection Act.
Mr Eastwood resided at addresses in both Bradford and Leeds during the period of the offences, spanning from July 2022 to October 2023.
His Ford Transit van was identified as the vehicle used for fly-tipping on four separate occasions – twice in the Bradford area and twice in the Leeds area – after members of the public alerted authorities.
Both Bradford Council and Leeds City Council teams conducted investigations into the incidents, which were also captured on CCTV cameras.
Mr Eastwood denied involvement in any of the incidents, but as the registered keeper of the van, he bore legal responsibility for the fly-tipping. Asserting that he wasn’t driving the vehicle would not absolve him from prosecution.
Mr Eastwood, who stated his occupation as a ‘scrap man’ or ‘man with a van,’ admitted to not holding a licence to transport waste.
His van was seized in November 2022, with the assistance of West Yorkshire Police, and subsequently crushed.
Mr Eastwood received a 12-month suspended sentence for 18 months, along with an 18-month community order that included 20 rehabilitative activity days and a six-month drug rehabilitation order. He was also ordered to pay £500 compensation to each council.
Cllr Sarah Ferriby, Porfolio Holder for Healthy People and Places, said: “This sends out a clear message that fly-tipping will not be tolerated and once it has been discovered, we will find those who do it and take action. This prosecution has only been made possible by the members of the public who reported it and close collaboration with our colleagues at Leeds City Council. We would urge anyone who suspects fly-tipping to report it.”
Councillor Mohammed Rafique, Executive Member for Climate, Energy, Environment and Green Space at Leeds City Council, said: “This is a fantastic result for residents across Leeds and Bradford, bringing a repeated fly tipper to justice as we continue to crack down on environmental crime. We will always work with partners across West Yorkshire to limit criminals’ abilities to fly tip in our city and beyond and I hope this latest conviction is a warning to anyone thinking of traveling to Leeds or Bradford to fly tip. I would also like to extend my sincere thanks to colleagues from Leeds City Council’s Serious Environmental Crime team and their partners at Bradford for bringing this successful prosecution.”