A MAN has been jailed after ignoring repeated warnings from the Environment Agency to stop illegally importing and burning waste at two sites.
Shane Boutwell, 40, of Rivendell Vale, South Woodham Ferrers, was sent to jail for 14 months.
He was convicted by Chelmsford Crown Court of constantly importing and burning waste on a large scale at sites in Bradwell-on-Sea and Latchingdon.
Officers visited a plot at Bradwell Wick Leisure Plots in Maldon Road, Bradwell, in June 2020 after firefighters raised concerns following several fires.
Large amounts of waste were found, including electrical waste, household waste and demolition waste.
Boutwell also had a site at Lower Barn Farm, Lower Burnham Road, Latchingdon, which police visited in September 2020.
They found burning waste with flames reaching up to two meters high.
Environment Agency officers identified large piles of soil heavily contaminated with bricks, concrete, paving slabs and plastics.
A fire officer told them the site was a “cause for concern”.
His Honor Judge Loram QC told Boutwell that the two sites were “professional operations for your own gain”.
She said: “The impact of your behavior on others has been profound.
“You have affected legitimate businesses and encouraged others to sink like you.”
The judge ordered Boutwell to clean up the two sites upon his release from prison and return to court in September 2023 to consider prosecution cost claims and forfeiture of the proceeds of his crimes.
Environment Agency Enforcement Team Leader Lesley Robertson said: ‘In this case, Boutwell has been repeatedly ordered to remove waste from both sites and will not didn’t.
“He operated with a commercial advantage, large and burning waste on a massive scale, undermining legitimate businesses with little or no regard for the environment or residents.
“His sentence shows how seriously Judge Loram took this.”
READ MORE>>> The fire station will no longer be full-time in the area
Boutwell has previously admitted to operating the two waste management facilities without a permit.
He also admitted disposing of controlled waste in a way that could cause pollution or harm human health at both sites, and failing to remove waste from Bradwell Wick.
Anyone suspected of a waste-related crime can call the Environment Agency hotline on 0800 807060 or Crimestoppers on 0800 555111.